Yaya Toure is worth £50m says Samir Nasri, but African heritage counts against the Manchester City midfielder
He is in the top three of the word’s best midfielders
Manchester City’s Samir Nasri has declared that team-mate Yaya Touré is undervalued in world football because he is African, after the Ivorian’s sublime strike helped win the League Cup.
Nasri said Touré would be considered the best midfielder in the world if he was not African. “Of course it counts against him being from Ivory Coast,” the Frenchman said. “If he was Argentinian or Brazilian everyone will talk about him, everyone. You have some Brazilians or Argentinians, I don’t want to say anything wrong, but just because they are from this country you pay them £40m or £50m.
“A guy like Yaya, he won every trophy, he is always there. Tell me one defensive midfielder who can go forward like him, who can score 16 or 17 goals in a season. Tell me one and then we can talk.
“You should know now [how good he is]. I might be a little bit biased because he’s my friend, but for me he’s in the top three of the best midfielders in the world.”
City manager Manuel Pellegrini’s claim after the 3-1 win over Sunderland that his club can win an historic domestic treble seems a tall order, with the club fourth and six points behind leaders Chelsea, albeit with two games in hand.
But Nasri was bullish, insisting his club are not afraid of Jose Mourinho’s side. “I’m not scared about Chelsea or the league,” he said. “There is plenty more to play and everyone is going to have difficult games and if we win our two games we are going to be top of the league. It’s better not to talk but to act on the pitch.” Nasri avoided any comparisons between City and his previous club Arsenal, who were on the receiving end of a 2-1 defeat in their own League Cup final against Birmingham City three years ago.
“Don’t try to compare City and Arsenal. I had a great time at Arsenal and was unlucky with Arsenal and am just happy I win trophies, that’s it,” he said. “Third time is a good one for me. I lost two finals and it was painful, with Arsenal against Birmingham and then against Wigan [in the FA Cup final] last season.”
The 26-year-old said he considered his own strike to send City ahead recompense to the club for prevailing with him through a difficult spell under Roberto Mancini last season.
“It’s what they pay me for and bring me to the club [for],” he said. “It’s about time to show them what I can do. Everyone at the club has been amazing with me, believed in me and when you have this feeling, your confidence is really high and that’s why you want to do good for them.
“It’s impossible to explain [how it feels to score a goal like that]. When you score a goal in a final at 2-1, it’s like your feet don’t touch the floor any more. It’s like you are flying, I don’t know how to explain.”
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