Carlos Tevez focused on Shanghai Shenhua despite exit rumours - Poyet
Carlos Tevez will not be distracted by growing rumours he will quit the Chinese Super League (CSL) and return to Argentina, his Shanghai Shenhua coach Gus Poyet has said, as the former Manchester United striker struggles to settle at his new club.
The 32-year-old was signed by Shenhua from Boca Juniors for €11 million in January and scored on his CSL debut on Saturday as Shanghai handed last season's runners-up Jiangsu Suning a 4-0 thrashing on the opening day of the season.
But despite his impressive start on the field -- he had a hand in all four of his club's goals last week -- speculation has begun in Argentina that Tevez is keen to return home.
"The main problems for Tevez is language and food," Poyet told Argentine newspaper Ole. "Same as me, he can't speak Chinese and he needs a translator all the time or he won't be able to communicate with others.
"Fortunately he can speak a little Italian and English. Last week, he had a BBQ with [Colombian teammates Fredy] Guarin and [Giovanni] Moreno. Except that, he hasn't tried any Chinese food yet. He needs a lot of time to adapt to Chinese food.
"But he doesn't have any problem adapting to the Chinese time zone, he sleeps very well. His family are here with him, that makes him feel good. When he returns home, there are people he wants to see.
"Rumours are saying that Tevez will leave China, but these rumours won't affect him."
Tevez has already denied speculation he is earning the largest salary in world football following his move to China and he made an inauspicious start to life on the field when his Shanghai side were eliminated from the Asian Champions League playoffs by Australia's Brisbane Roar in mid-February.
But Saturday's win over Jiangsu has boosted both Tevez and the club, who take on Fabio Cannavaro's newly promoted Tianjin Quanjian on Saturday as they look to kickoff the season with back-to-back wins.
Michael Church has written about Asian football for more than 20 years and mainly covers the Chinese game for ESPN FC. Twitter: @michaelrgchurch