Yaya Toure

Tuesday 17 Jan 2012

Ivory Coast's giant midfielder

Yaya Toure

Ivory Coast midfielder Yaya Toure is approaching the Nations Cup on the back of some impressive displays with English Premier League club Manchester City.

The 28-year-old scored the only goal in City’s 1-0 win over Stoke City in the FA Cup final last season which ended the club’s 35-year wait for a major trophy. He was also instrumental in helping the rich club occupy the Premier League summit at the halfway stage of this season, scoring three goals and creating several others.

Toure’s physical attributes, speed and goal-scoring abilities can be huge assets to an Ivory Coast side who are chasing their first CAN triumph since 1992.

His form in 2011 earned him Africa’s best player award as he beat off competition from Ghana’s Andre Ayew and Mali’s Seydou Keita. 

"This is the highest prize I can get in my career," Toure, who made 58 appearances with the Ivory Coast and took part in the 2006 and 2010 World Cups, told a news conference after winning the prestigious award.

"In a few months we will look for the Africa Cup of Nations which is very important for me and my country. But for now I am very happy and very proud - it's unbelievable, it's amazing. It's a first step in my big career."

Toure recently said he would not retire from international football unless he lifted the CAN trophy with his country.

"I sincerely hope my generation will not pass without winning anything. That would be unthinkable. I really cannot describe it," he was quoted as saying by Eurosport.

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