No Tevez boost for City

Image: Tevez: Fitness race

Manchester City have confirmed that Carlos Tevez looks certain to miss Sunday's Manchester derby.

Blues' ex-Red remains doubtful for derby clash

Manchester City have confirmed that Carlos Tevez looks certain to miss Sunday's Manchester derby after returning to the City camp. Tevez is eager to face Manchester United after leaving the Premier League champions this summer to travel across town and join big-spending City. But the 25-year-old striker injured a knee playing for Argentina against Brazil last week, putting him in doubt for a quick return to Old Trafford. City boss Mark Hughes vowed to give Tevez every chance to prove his fitness in time for the derby clash after the Argentina medical staff claimed he would be out for up to three weeks. And having now linked up again with City, their assistant boss Mark Bowen admitted Tevez is unlikely to face his former club. "He is back here today and we'll assess it from there, but he is very doubtful," Bowen told the club's official website.

Doctor assessment

"What we are hearing is that it's probably going to keep him out, but until the doctor assesses him hands-on we don't really know. "The boss has been in contact with the Argentina medical team, as has our medical team. "But the signs are not encouraging. We wouldn't 100 per cent rule him out yet - we have fingers crossed and we are always hopeful.'' The absence of Tevez would be a big loss for City as Robinho is out with an ankle problem and Emmanuel Adebayor is set to receive a suspension from Saturday's 4-2 win over Arsenal.
Striker dilemma
And although Roque Santa Cruz has finally started training after knee surgery he had before his £17million switch from Blackburn, Bowen cannot see the Paraguayan being in contention either. "I doubt he will be available very much, but it's nice to see him back anyway," he added. That could leave Craig Bellamy as City's only front-line striker as they aim to maintain their 100 per cent start although Benjani, who scored on his City debut in their 2-1 win at Old Trafford in February 2008, could come in from the cold. Alternatively, Hughes could push wingers Shaun Wright-Phillips and Martin Petrov into more advanced positions.

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