Mario Balotelli has advised Manchester City supporters not to “boo” returning star Carlos Tevez.
The Italian, speaking to Noel Gallagher for Saturday's Football Focus, stressed: "If they make pressure on Carlos, they make pressure to all the team, so they should do nothing."
Tevez returned to Manchester after absconding to Argentina for five months, following a fall-out with manager Roberto Mancini during a Champions League match against Bayern Munich.
He refused to warm-up in the September fixture, but recently apologised for his conduct, despite stating last month that he had been "treated like a dog" by the ex-Internazionale coach.
Due to the player’s conduct at the Allianz Arena, the 28-year-old has not been included in the match day squad since September, but Balotelli remained diplomatic: "I think everyone can make a mistake. Carlos is part of the team. He's just a part of the team, so everybody loves him."
Tevez became an instant icon with City fans after he crossed the Manchester divide from rivals United in 2009. A "Welcome to Manchester" billboard was erected at Deansgate to herald his arrival. Tevez scored 29 goals in his first campaign.
Appointed captain by Mancini for the following campaign, he led the club to their first major trophy in 35 years as the Citizens won the FA Cup against Stoke City.
Yet even that season was marred by controversy with Tevez handing in a transfer request before Christmas in 2010, alongside constant sniping about Manchester, insisting it had "only two restaurants".
Tevez recently made his comeback in a behind-closed-doors friendly for the club's reserve side against Preston North End at the club's training ground, and scored in his second game midweek.