Yaya Toure determined to repay Manchester City fans by maintaining fight for the Premier League title

The midfielder has returned from the African Cup of Nations

Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure is determined to keep up the fight in this season's Barclays Premier League title race - for the Blues fans who have made him feel so much at home since he joined the club.

It is looking like an increasingly tall order for second-placed City to retain the title this term, with last weekend's 2-2 draw against Liverpool meaning they are now nine points behind leaders Manchester United with 13 league games remaining.

Toure - back in the last few days after a month away at the African Nations Cup with Ivory Coast - is certainly not about to abandon hope, though.

The 29-year-old knows, after he and his City team-mates pipped United to the title last season having been eight points behind them with six fixtures to go, that nothing has been settled yet.

And Toure is also driven on by a desire to make City supporters happy, having been embraced by them so enthusiastically over the last two and a half years following his move from Barcelona.

"I feel like I'm home again," Toure told City's official website, http://www.mcfc.com, after his return from international duty.

"I met some City fans before my flight from Paris to Manchester and they said 'welcome home, Yaya' and they said they wanted me to help the team and bring happiness to our supporters. That's what I aim to do."

Regarding Ivory Coast's quarter-final exit at the African Nations Cup, Toure added: "Of course we were disappointed.

"We tried our best but it wasn't good enough this time, and now I am only focusing on City, my club.

"I'm only looking forward and not back and that means the Premier League and nothing else at this moment. It's good to be back."

City travel to Southampton tomorrow hoping to cut the gap at the top of the table to six points ahead of United's home clash with Everton on Sunday.

Meanwhile, City youth player Courtney Meppen-Walter has admitted causing the deaths of a brother and sister by careless driving.

Meppen-Walter, 18, was arrested in September after his Mercedes was involved in a crash with a Nissan Micra in Manchester.

The Nissan driver, Kulwant Singh, 32, and his sister, front seat passenger Ravel Kaur, 37, died.

Ms Kaur's two sons, aged 16 and 17, were sitting in the back of the car and were injured in the crash on the evening of September 1.

Meppen-Walter admitted the charges at Manchester Magistrates' Court yesterday.

He was told by magistrates his case was too serious for them to sentence him, and he will be sentenced by a judge at Manchester Crown Court on February 28.

PA

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