Yaya Touré was expected to be one of the biggest casualties of new manager Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City renovation.
The 32 year old Ivory Coast international has been one of the club’s star performers since his £24million arrival from Barcelona in 2010, but his repeated threats to leave the club for increasingly ridiculous reasons have made it hard for the Man City fan base to warm to the midfielder.
Touré also has previous with his former manager Guardiola. Pep sold Touré to Man City six years ago having ultimately chosen Sergio Busquets as his preferred defensive midfield option. Touré’s agent, Dimitry Seluk, recently said of Guardiola’s success at the Camp Nou:
“Pep is a great coach…But he has won the title at Barcelona and Bayern Munich. The truth is that my grandfather would win the title with Barcelona and Bayern Munich because they are big clubs with great players.”
Seluk has been speaking again, this time to FC Inter news in an interview that has been picked up by the Daily Mail, about Touré’s current situation and the likelihood of his client departing the Etihad in the summer. The player still has one year remaining on his current deal, but both he and his agent feel that now is the right time to leave the club.
“He’ll definitely leave Manchester City, I can calmly confirm that.
“Various offers have arrived for Yaya and we’re evaluating them, but no decision has been taken yet for next season.”
Touré has been heavily linked with a reunion with former Man City boss Roberto Mancini, who now presides over Serie A side Inter. The Italian giants, while definitely interested in the four-time African Player of the Year, would struggle to even come close to his reported £220,000-per-week contract.
Seluk, however, believes that this may not necessarily be a stumbling block:
“Will the economic aspect make the difference? Absolutely not. We don’t put money before everything, but the project the club presents us. The best will convince us.
“Inter? We’re definitely talking about a great club and everyone knows about the relationship between Yaya and Mancini, but like I’ve already said, we haven’t made any decision yet.
“But I’ll add that the Nerazzurri’s project is great and Inter is a fantastic club. So it’s normal that they want a player of this level.”
That said, Inter will not be the only club in for Touré. Teams from China and the Middle East will almost certainly be in for the player – and only then will we find out whether or not his next move is dependent on the “economic aspect.”
Either way, with the likes of İlkay Gündoğan, Toni Kroos and Granit Xhaka all being linked with the Man City midfield recently, this gives the distinct impression of a player jumping before he is pushed.