Yaya Toure announced today that he has retired from international football.
Like most players aged 33 and up, this is most likely to prolong his club football career, however, after being pushed out of the Manchester City team after the arrival of Guardiola, it begs the question: is he retiring from international football to prolong his career in the Premier League, or elsewhere?
Guardiola has reportedly said that Toure’s agent, Dimitri Seluk must apologise for the comments he made about the Ivorian’s exclusion from the Champions League squad, before the ex-City captain can play for the team again.
This does seem slightly unfair though, as it was not the player who made the comments – perhaps another example of agents becoming the powerhouses in the world of football?
Yaya Touré is unhappy again. Speaking to L’Equipe, the Ivory Coast star claims that even though he is winning titles and making money, he is often left feeling down due to his constant mistreatment by the English media. It seems that ever since he did not receive a birthday cake from Manchester City last year, Touré has been disillusioned with life in England.
He told the French newspaper, “You know, everyone thinks I am happy: I have won titles, lots of money, but, no, I am not happy.” Clearly money isn’t everything for the Ivorian, and neither is success it seems; keeping his family safe and happy seem to be the prerogative for him, speaking about his sons, he claimed “I do not want them to have to go through everything that I have endured. It has hurt me. Studying for them.” It seems that Touré is so out of love with the game that would rather his children were well educated than talented at football like their father.
After having 2 impressive seasons in front of goal, Yaya Toure is having a rather lacklustre time this term, having only scored 1 goal in his 8 appearances for Manchester City. Since his £24million move from Barcelona, the powerhouse midfielder feels that he has been treated unfairly by the English media; “I missed almost 2 months and then I was criticised for not scoring as many goals as in the season before.” he told L’Equipe, “Here, when it’s bad, they highlight the faults. When it’s good, they leave that in the dungeon.” This interesting analogy by Touré reveals what it’s like for a Premier League footballer to have the pressure of the English media constantly on their back, and it seems to be rather unpleasant.
There has never been any doubting the African’s goal-scoring ability until this season. Beautiful goals from outside of the box have constantly been an aspect of his game, yet he seems to be lacking that cutting edge he has shown in previous years.
So, will Yaya Toure be leaving Manchester City next Summer, despite having 18 months left on his contract? It seems likely. His unhappiness with life at the moment may even lead him to retire, although that would be a drastic action. The 32-year-old will most likely want to move to a country where is respected by the media, so perhaps the USA will be his next career path, following in the footsteps of a number of older high-profile players. Whatever he decides, Yaya Toure has been a revelation for Manchester City and surely must go down as one of their greatest midfielders ever, despite a number of hiccups regarding his emotional wellbeing at the club.