The message is thought to be in response to a 2009 comment by Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson. When asked if United would ever be City’s underdogs, he replied: “Not in my lifetime”. 

City have since moved to condemn the actions of the controversial striker, who moved from United to City in 2009. 

A spokeswoman for the new champions 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 offences or distress caused.”

Tevez himself has since apologised for his actions, saying: “ 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.”

The depth of his respect, though, must certainly be called in to question. After a rocky season in which Tevez enjoyed a self-imposed exile from the Etihad, it is yet another controversial moment for the Argentine. 

Photo: Getty.