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Maradona urges Tevez to quit United for Italy

  • Story Highlights
  • Diego Maradona urges Carlos Tevez to quit Manchester Utd at end of season
  • Argentine coach believes striker would be better off joining Italy's Inter Milan
  • Tevez on bench when Maradona watched United beat Chelsea at the weekend
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(CNN) -- Argentine coach Diego Maradona has urged Carlos Tevez to quit Manchester United at the end of the season and head for Italy.

Tevez has been advised by Argentine coach Maradona to leave Old Trafford at the end of the season.

Tevez has been advised by Argentine coach Maradona to leave Old Trafford at the end of the season.

Maradona watched United trounce Chelsea 3-0 last weekend at Old Trafford where striker Tevez remained on the bench despite a rousing reception when he went on a touchline warm-up during the game.

"I saw the Manchester United match. They won, but did so without Tevez. This situation is not good for him. For sure, certain things are happening which mean his departure is nearing," Maradona told Italian newspaper Corriere dello Sport.

"Italy, and Inter (Milan) in particular, would be great for him. Among other things, the fact that his contract is soon to expire facilitates a change of shirt."

Weekend reports claimed that United manager Alex Ferguson has already pinpointed Lyon's French international striker Karim Benzema as his chief summer target.

Benzema, whose contract runs until 2013, made his mark against United in a Champions League tie last season when he scored in a first leg tie.

He hit the target 20 times as Lyon secured a seventh straining French League title and he has netted five times in this season's Champions League.

Lyon are said to be willing to cash in at the right price with Spanish giants Barcelona and Real Madrid also monitoring the situation.

Media reports said Lyon would want around £40 million (45 million euros) for Benzema while the asking price for Tevez -- he joined United on a two-year loan -- is likely to be around £32 million.

Tevez, who hit the headlines during two seasons in Brazil with Corinthians, has struggled to retain a starting place at Old Trafford following his controversial stay at West Ham.

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He has indicated he would respond positively to any approach from Real Madrid, but is sure to take on board the advice of Maradona who twice led Napoli to the Serie A title after joining the Italian club from Barcelona.

Meanwhile, West Ham face a fresh inquiry after the FA and Premier League launched an investigation relating to dealings with Tevez's representatives after the club had initially been fined £5.5m for breaching league rules over third-party agreements.

It follows the findings of an arbitration tribunal in favour of Sheffield United and against West Ham last year which decided Tevez should not have been able to play for the Hammers at the end of the 2006-07 season.

Premier League West Ham insist that they have nothing to hide.

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