Tevez had been a cult hero to the Old Trafford faithful during his two-year loan stint at the club, but has quickly become the subject of abuse after trading his red shirt for a blue one and Zabaleta believes the vitriol aimed in the direction of his countryman just goes to show how fickle supporters can be.
Zabaleta, himself, was hit by an object thrown towards Tevez at half-time in the 4-3 thriller and he now insists Tevez's decision to join Mark Hughes' revolution at Eastlands has been justified as a result.
"I know Carlos very well. We were friends last year, even though he was at United and I was at City, so I know what his situation was," said the City defender. "The United fans blame Carlos but they should not because he was happy there. He wanted to stay and it was difficult for him to leave.
"But United missed their chance. And when it became clear City wanted him more than United did, his decision was made. Carlos has always been a player who gives his team 100 per cent. He helped West Ham to stay in the Premier League and the fans still love him there and he respects them.
"He gave United everything as well. He won the Premier League for them and the Champions' League. He helped them be successful. To be treated as he was at Old Trafford made him understand he made the right choice when he came to City.
"Now, Carlos knows the fans weren't genuine. He felt it was not his fault he left the club. People say Carlos joined City because he wanted money. No, Carlos came here because he saw this was a club that would reach the top very quickly.
"The City fans love him. They love him even more because he rejected United and now he wants to make history in blue."