No Player Is Bigger Than Manchester City, Robinho
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Mark Hughes confirms from Tenerife that City's record signing flew home for his birthday this weekend without the club's permission...
The City gaffer spoke about Robinho's absence to the Official City Website from the team's Canary Island's training camp:
'Robbie left without permission, he felt that he had personal things that he needed to attend to. He made the decision to leave the camp, and go back to Brazil. That was not with my permission, and the situation at the moment is not really practical to get him back here with time differences and length of flights, so he will be back at the weekend ready to train when we are back in Manchester at the first available opportunity.
'Once he is back, I will sit down with him and explain my feelings, and decisions will be made after that. He has rung me, and he understands that we need to address this - and we will. Then we will move on.
'He obviously felt that there were certain things that he needed to address back home, and so, wrongly, he made that decision to go back to Brazil. But he will be back at the weekend, then we will make sure that he knows my feelings and I am sure we will get a more detailed explanation from Robbie.'
Not good enough, Robinho. Hughes, with the full backing of almost every Blue, I'd wager, has every right to throw the book at the coveted superstar.
Robinho is the biggest footballing name to play for Manchester City in the modern era and has brilliantly answered the critics who queued up to say he would fail to adjust to Premier League football, but he would do well to not get on the wrong side of City's supporters who have welcomed him with more than open arms.
Hughes said he relished the prospect of being tested as never before when he accepted Thaksin Shinawatra's offer to manage City and Robinho's flight from a squad bonding trip is likely to test his man management skills in a way he probably never envisaged.
Robinho, no matter what our club's standing, team or manager's performances and capabilities are, you are either with us, or you're not.
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