Sorry to be a bit of a party pooper but Mr Yaya Toure your days at Manchester City are numbered.
Bit dramatic you might think? Not really, here's why.
Before we start, yes this is the same Yaya Toure who has won the player of the year award in Africa so many times and yes this is the same Toure who scored 20 goals in a season from midfield which helped City to a League and League Cup double.
SUBMIT AN ARTICLE
Apply to become a GMS writer by signing up and submitting a 250 word test article: https://gms.to/haveyoursay5
So why the criticism? The reason is simple. At 32, closing in on 33, Yaya Toure is not the athlete he once was. Harsh you might think? Toure in his golden years at City used to terrorise the opposition with his bustling runs and general influence on the game.
But now that is a distant memory. This year Toure has been playing in defensive midfield and he just isn’t good at it. Here are a few examples:
Against Barcelona, a side packed with a world class midfield of Xavi and Iniesta - winning the midfield battles was always going to be key. Sadly that night, City didn’t as they were overrun in the middle.
The central combination of Fernandinho and Toure were run ragged as the Spaniards dominated both legs of the round of 16 games last year. Another example was more recent, this time against Borussia Monchengladbach.
The Germans, after an impressive domestic season last year, have really struggled this year and lost their manager in a turbulent start. As what usually tends to be the case when a new manager comes in is, the team's performances improve, and this case was no different.
City were cut open and were hugely exposed time and time again in the first half. At that point, the sky blues hadn’t conceded in the league, but without the injured Vincent Kompany they looked very frail.
The visitors were extremely lucky they weren’t three or four down in the first period. Toure, alongside Fernandinho, was off the pace. Thankfully the Ivorian had to go off injured, and it was no coincidence that in the last 20 minutes the Citizens had a real stranglehold on the game.
It could be argued Toure may have slowed down with age, but that doesn't mean he should be played as a holding player. Sadly for Yaya the attacking midfield department is looking rather congested.
Jesus Navas, David Silva, Raheem Sterling, Kevin De Bruyne and Samir Nasri all stand in his way, such is the quality that City have in that department.
It is harder to notice it when they are playing against a ‘weaker team' but against better opposition there are always chances for exploiting Manchester City. Sorry Yaya but the end is nigh my friend, the end is nigh.