Manchester City have apologised to Sir Alex Ferguson after Carlos Tevez held a sign up saying ‘RIP Fergie’ during the champions’ parade through the city yesterday.
The 28-year-old former Manchester United striker held the placard up after a member of the crowd threw it onto the bus.
The gesture gained cheers of delight from many of the 100,000 fans who reacted to Fergie’s statement three years ago that United would never be underdogs to City ‘in my lifetime’.
A City spokeswoman said: “The creation of the tasteless material is in itself reprehensible and in accepting and brandishing it, Carlos has made a significant error of judgement.
“The club wishes to express its sincerest apologies to Sir Alex Ferguson and Manchester United Football Club for any offence or distress caused.”
Tevez, who spent four months in Argentina on a self-imposed exile this season, said: “I got carried away in the excitement of the moment and I certainly didn’t mean any disrespect to Sir Alex Ferguson, who I admire as a man and a manager.”
More than 100,000 people took to the streets of Manchester to celebrate City’s first title triumph in 44 years as members of the squad, coaching staff and the manager addressed fans from a stage in Albert Square.
Mario Balotelli refrained from joining in the celebrations as he was expected to report back to Italy following his inclusion in the provisional squad for Euro 2012.
Mancini said: “I think we should be proud of these players because they did everything for [the fans] – they wanted to win this championship for you.”
Midfielder James Milner said: “I’ve not slept much – I couldn’t.
“I’m still in a bit of shock – we all are. It’s still hard to believe we were 2-1 down going into injury time so it’s going to take a while to sink in.”
Team-mate Gareth Barry said: “Days like this are why we came to City and it’s just fantastic.
“I’ve got memories I’ll treasure for the rest of my career.”
Mike Summerbee, an integral part of City’s 1968 title-winning team, said: “The people out here think so much of the club, these are proper supporters. This is what Manchester City is like.”