Yaya Toure: Manchester City midfielder signs new contract

Yaya Toure scored twice on his return to the Manchester City first team in November

Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has signed a new one-year deal with the Premier League club.

The 34-year-old has played 299 games for City, scoring 81 goals, since joining from Barcelona in 2010.

Earlier this season, Toure was left out of the Champions League squad and manager Pep Guardiola fell out with the player’s agent, Dimitri Seluk.

“I am delighted. I told myself the journey at City is not done,” Toure told the club’s website.

The former Monaco and Olympiakos man played in the first leg of the Champions League play-off against Steaua Bucharest in August, but was then dropped from the team by Guardiola.

Seluk claimed the midfielder had been “humiliated” and the Spaniard refused to pick Toure until Seluk apologised for criticising the decision to leave the player out.

But Toure apologised on Seluk’s behalf at the start of November and he was was selected for the Premier League game against Crystal Palace later that month, in which he scored two goals following his three-month exile.

Guardiola demands apology from Toure

Toure became an important part of the team for the remainder of the campaign, playing a total of 31 games, as City finished third in the league.

He said: “I am very lucky now to be part of a great club with great players around me who are helping me to achieve my targets.

“Of course I want to win trophies, that is very important to me. I want to enjoy it at this age still and remaining here is a massive, massive thing.

“It is a great club, going in the right direction with new players who are coming in.”

City’s director of football Txiki Begiristain added: “Yaya has been a fantastic servant for Manchester City and continues to be a vital member of Pep Guardiola’s squad.

“He is one of our most experienced and popular players and we couldn’t be happier that he is staying with us as we embark on what we all hope will be a very exciting season.”

Toure’s deal at Etihad Stadium was coming to an end this summer, while out-of-contract goalkeeper Willy Caballero, winger Jesus Navas and defenders Pablo Zabaleta, Gael Clichy and Bacary Sagna will all leave the club at the end of the month.

City have completed the £43m purchase of Monaco midfielder Bernardo Silva, while they have agreed a £35m deal for Benfica goalkeeper Ederson Moraes.


BBC Sport’s Simon Stone

It is quite remarkable that Toure should be the only one of City’s out-of-contract players to sign a new deal.

In November the 34-year-old appeared to have no future at the club – with his departure in the January transfer window looking increasingly inevitable.

But not only did manager Pep Guardiola extract the apology from Toure’s agent he had demanded after his negative comments about the City boss, he then saw the midfielder produce the sort of performances that brought to mind his fantastic early seasons at City when he was one of the most dominant midfielders in the Premier League.

Playing in a deep midfield role, he brought nous and experience to City’s team at a point when they badly needed it.

And unlike long-time team-mate Pablo Zabaleta, who has left for West Ham, Toure evidently believes he still has a role to play under Guardiola.

View the original article: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/40126362

With Ilkay Gundogan likely to remain sidelined for several more months yet with his cruciate injury, expect to see plenty of Toure in the early months of the season.

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