Toure planned Manchester City move for months

New Manchester City signing Kolo Toure has revealed his move from Arsenal to Eastlands has been on the cards for six months.

The 28-year-old defender has signed a four-year contract with City after ending a seven-year spell at Arsenal.

He follows former Gunners' team-mate Emmanuel Adebayor in joining Mark Hughes' side, but claims he knew he would be moving long before the Togo international's transfer.

"I think before Adebayor we knew," he said at his presentation.

"There was some talk about coming here. It's from six months ago."

Toure claims he had received offers from abroad, but never contemplated leaving the Premier League.

He said: "I was the last one in the 'Invincibles' team (the Arsenal side that went a whole season unbeaten in the league) and I was expecting to leave Arsenal.

"I think Arsenal are a really good team, but it was the right time for me to move.

"First I thought I did not want to leave England, even though other teams came in for me. But it was important not to leave for me and my family."

"Manchester City are a really good team and want to do something. I am really delighted to be here, the future is big."

Toure feels his new employers can challenge for the Barclays Premier League title next season.

He added: "Yes, I believe (so), that's why I am here. The quality is big, there are fantastic players here.

"I will give everything I have to make the club one of the best in England."

Hughes is waiting to see whether City will manage to further boost their defence by signing Joleon Lescott, with Everton confirming overnight they had rejected an £18million bid for the former Wolves centre-back.

"My understanding is that we've already done that and by all accounts Everton have rejected that," the Welshman said of the latest bid. "We'll wait and see."

Hughes has been impressed with what he has seen so far of 28-year-old Toure.

"We're absolutely delighted Kolo's here," he said. "Until you actually work really closely with a player, you have impressions from afar of the qualities they display for their clubs but once you get close up it's reassuring everything you've seen in the past comes to fruition. He's showed that in the space of time over one session."

He also claimed Toure would still have been purchased had the attempt to lure Chelsea captain John Terry to Eastlands been successful.

"I would say yes," he said in reply to that question. "We've looked at players we feel will help us.

"There's no difference in the quality of players we've targeted. We're looking at players who will be at the same level to help us progress. We have a list of category A players of the type that will enable us to be successful in the future. John Terry was on that list and Kolo very much so.

"We don't move from one player to a less player, we go from one player to next at that level.

"He's going to help us in a great way, his leadership qualities were evident this morning. He has the benefit of being at a top, top club. He understands the mentality you need, we've seen that already.

"We're progressing nicely. The business we've already done is exceptional. We're really pleased with the quality we've been able to bring in. Obviously there's still a way to go in the transfer window and we'll look at opportunities and see what we can bring in.

"They'll have to be top-quality players to improve us. There's always deals to be made towards the end of the window that just present themselves and are right for the club at that time."

Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill has tipped the revamped City squad to challenge for the Premier League title this season, but Hughes is not getting too excited by the hype.

"There's a number of managers in and around us that use our situation to possibly lessen expectations of their own club," he said.

"I don't think Martin's the only manager of teams that could potentially be in and around us that have mentioned we should win the title. It maybe eases the pressure on them."

A busy day at Eastlands yesterday also saw Nedum Onuoha sign a new five-year contract with the club, much to Hughes' delight.

"It was never in my thoughts to involve him in any deal," said the former Blackburn boss.

"We're delighted he's committed himself to the club. This is his club. It's important to have a core of players who have a real empathy for the club."

One player who will not be in Hughes' plans for next season is Brazil midfielder Elano, whose departure for Galatasaray was confirmed this morning.

"It's a big year for Ela, a World Cup year," said Hughes. "Obviously he wants to stay in and around the Brazil national squad. Obviously this year the guarantee that he would play week in week out wasn't there for him and I think that was key to his decision to leave.

"He's moved on and it's a good deal for the club and a good deal for him as well by all accounts. We wish him well."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory