When City won their second Premier League title in 3 years, little did they know that they might be facing a huge battle to keep their star player in the summer. well, that seems to be the situation now as key midfielder Yaya Toure could be rocking the Etihad boat with a quit threat after he didn’t get a ‘royal’ treatment on his birthday.
This inkling was given by his Russian representative Dmitry Seluk on Toure’s birthday to protest City’s poor celebration of the man that scored 20 EPL goals from midfield.
“Yaya is so upset, he is thinking of leaving City,” “There are a number of things that have happened that have left Yaya feeling bitterly upset. City have treated him with disrespect and have really hurt him.
“What happened at his birthday meant the club don’t care about him. It was proof. They can say whatever they want, ‘Oh we like him, but we forgot.’ None of them shook his hand on his birthday. It’s really sick.
“The club’s owners ate a 100kg cake after winning the Premier League this season, but when they and the players were all together, none of them shook his hand on his birthday. It shows they don’t care about him. They don’t know that money can’t buy relationships – no Sheikh can buy a relationship.”
Toure seemed to play down his agent’s outburst by tweeting that his commitment should be judged on the field but that turned out to be a momentary succour as the Ivorian later on backed what his agent earlier said with this;
“Everything dimitry said is true,” Touré tweeted. “He speaks for me. I will give an interview after world cup to explain.”
The belief that the new tantrum is borne out of Toure’s desire to make more money from city via an improved contract was played down by Seluk.
“No. Money is not important,” “He has enough money. The most important thing is a human relationship and maybe this is his opportunity for Yaya to find that. If City don’t respect him, then easy – Yaya will leave. No problem.
“He [Touré] got a cake, but when it was Roberto Carlos’s birthday, the president of Anzhi gave him a Bugatti.
“I don’t expect City to present Yaya with a Bugatti, we only asked that they shook his hand and said ‘we congratulate you’. It is the minimum they must do when it is his birthday and the squad is all together.
“Of course, Yaya is upset about this. It is his birthday and nobody said anything or shook his hand, so he does not feel comfortable.”
A big outburst that is and from an the stand point of top clubs, it is interesting and probably, an invitation to land arguably the most complete midfielder in Europe. Barca, Real Madrid and some other moneybags might be interested but should Arsenal also join the race for the Ivorian?
Arsenal missed the opportunity to sign him as a youngster and also when he was leaving Monaco for Barcelona and the Catalans for Manchester City. Should Wenger throw his hat into the ring for the midfield marshal for the umpteenth time? Toure would be a massive addition and plus for any top club, Arsenal inclusive but it might be counter-productive. Toure is a midfield dynamite but he is aging already and in Ramsey, the Gunners already have a box to box midfielder that is edging close to been a world beater and the least Arsene Wenger can do is to allow him continue his development and improvement. Regular first team football is key to that and with Yaya Toure in the team, he won’t get that opportunity again. Losing a fledging world class player in the mould of Ramsey just to get one that is at his peak doesn’t make sense on the long term.
Another hurdle that might be difficult for Arsenal to surmount is his wages. Currently, the Ivorian is on 200k Pounds per week wages and Ozil who is the highest paid Arsenal player earns less than that. Should Arsenal convince City to sell, would Toure take a pay cut or would Arsenal smash their pay structure? If Arsenal decide to smash their wage bracket just to accommodate Toure, what happens to the Ozil? Won’t it create unhealthy rivalry and rupture the peace in the dressing room?
Bottom line is that Toure is a great player but Arsenal don’t need him to be great again. In fact, we have enough box to box and attacking midfielders to add yet another and an expensive one at that. Arsene Wenger should concentrate his efforts on signing a top striker, efficient winger and strong defender and Arsenal would be good to go for a sustained assault on the Premier League title next season.