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Why I Refused To Learn English

Former Manchester United and Manchester City striker Carlos Tevez has explained why he refused to learn English despite a seven-year period in the Premier League.

Tevez revealed that his ‘cultural problem’ with England and the Falklands War was the reason for him refusing to learn the language.


The former Argentina international claimed that if any of his teammates or staff members wished to speak to him, they would have to do so in Spanish.

Tevez first joined West Ham in 2006 – before later winning the top-flight title at both United and City.

He insisted he couldn’t take to England as he blames Britain for his uncle’s alcoholism.

In an interview with DSportsRadio in his homeland, the 39-year-old has stated his uncle’s deployment in the Falklands War between the two countries in 1982 played heavy on his conscience.

“I had a cultural problem with the English. I didn’t want to learn English, I wanted them to learn Spanish.

“I have an uncle who played in River Plate. He’s the only River supporter in my family.

“He played in the reserve team and when he was going to make his debut with the first team, he got called up to fight in the Falklands War.

“He suffered after that and became an alcoholic. That marked me a lot because he was very close to me.”

Tevez added: “The seven years I spent in England were, ‘OK, I’m here for work, but I’m not getting used to English culture.”

“Everything has a reason. Very few people know this story but today I can tell it.

“You want to speak to me. Then you learn Spanish, because I’m not going to learn English.”

Tevez’s former City teammate and Argentine compatriot Pablo Zabaleta has previously spoken about the former Juventus star’s reluctance to speak English.

He remarked in 2009: “Carlos tries sometimes to speak English. I said to him he needs to come to me for lessons. I didn’t speak English before but I learned it here.

“When I arrived I could not say anything. I got English lessons once a week.

“It’s important because we need to speak with teammates and managers.

“And we are living in England for the future so my English is getting better.”

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