"What happened in our dressing room happens in others as well. And when it matters it is good that it happens. Against Newcastle we had gone to sleep in the first half, so the confrontation with Tevez was exactly the alarm call everybody needed.
"The confrontation with Tevez was really ballsy. And in the second half City deservedly won. The alarm call worked well. We [Mancini and Tevez] sorted everything between us before the restart. And when I took him off at the end we shook hands again. Now and then a good shake-up is healthy."
I didn't write about this when the reports first came out, because I didn't really know what to make of it. I suspected, though, that it was less surprising, and less problematic than people presumed. As Ryan Giggs suggested in his interview with Simon Hattenstone this week, it is the reporting, not the existence, of these events that is noteworthy.
Roberto Mancini and Carlos Tévez are both notorious for their tempers. Given how poorly we played in the first half I would be disappointed if there had not been tension and discord at half-time. Tévez was appointed captain to channel his inner magma as constructively as possible, and this sounds like a vindication of that approach. As Paul Wilson writes on Guardian.co.uk today:
Be that as it may, the main reason City should take a relaxed view of tempers snapping in the dressing room is that it shows the club cares. Plenty of people maintain the only thing that matters to City's expensively assembled squad is the bottom line on the wage slip, but when members of a team are falling out among themselves at the same time as they are climbing to second in the Premier League it tells you that ambition has finally arrived at Eastlands. The real thing, not just the easy soundbite. The captain falling out with the manager over tactics should not be mistaken for just the latest bit of slapstick in the endless City comedy show, this is the development that shows how much has changed at the club.