Sport Soccer

Wednesday 12 December 2018

Brighton boss Chris Hughton says Yaya Toure a Manchester City great

Toure has spent eight seasons with City.

Yaya Toure
Yaya Toure

By Ed Elliot, Press Association Sport

Yaya Toure will be remembered as one of the great players in Manchester City’s history, says Brighton manager Chris Hughton.

The experienced midfielder, who is set to leave the Premier League champions at the end of the season, will bid farewell to City fans when Albion visit the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday.

Ivorian Toure has been central to City’s recent successes following a £24million switch from Barcelona in 2010, winning three league titles, an FA Cup and a League Cup.

He has made more than 300 appearances for the club but has been a peripheral figure this season, playing just 16 times.

City manager Pep Guardiola has urged his players to focus on beating Brighton to give the 34-year-old a fitting send off and opposing boss Hughton feels Toure deserves recognition.

“(I have) huge respect (for him),” said Hughton

“There will obviously be somebody that doesn’t play and he will play; well, he’s not a bad player to bring in, is he, with what he’s done?

“I suppose him and (David) Silva instantly come to mind that have been through a longer period and seen the real progress of this football team.

“He hasn’t figured as much as he would have liked but when he leaves and individuals look back at the great players of Manchester City then I think he has certainly been one of them.”

Brighton travel north free from pressure having secured their top flight status by beating City’s neighbours Manchester United on Friday evening.

The Seagulls, who finish the season against Liverpool at Anfield on Sunday, have lost all four of their away games against the top-six clubs so far without scoring a goal.

In their attempts to end that losing streak, Hughton believes his team can learn from relegation-threatened Huddersfield after they held City to a goalless draw on Sunday.

“Huddersfield were good and I wouldn’t want to take anything away from them and say that City were not at their best,” said Hughton.

“But it doesn’t happen often and Huddersfield showed what you have to do to have any chance of getting anything.

“They usually bounce back and you don’t expect them to lose too many games and our approach has to be exactly the same.

“We’ve managed to get some good results against the top six at home and make games as close as possible – Tottenham away and Chelsea away when for long periods we were very much in the games.

“This is our challenge and I want to be as good as we can in these (two remaining) games.”

Albion have no fresh selection concerns but remain without injured midfielder Steve Sidwell.

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