If there is one player in world football Europe’s top clubs would like to get their hands on it would be Manchester City star Yaya Toure.
But the midfield powerhouse, who was the driving force behind Manuel Pellegrini’s side’s Premier League title win, has revealed he is set to stay at the Etihad Stadium for the foreseeable future.
It represents a change in stance from the 31-year-old, who is 1/6 with Ladbrokes to stay at the Etihad, after he appeared to fall out with the Premier League champions (by the way – Happy Birthday Yaya!) earlier in the summer.
But with Toure’s mind changing more times than the direction of the wind the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and financial heavyweights PSG and Monaco are all waiting in the wings to prise the Ivorian away.
Oliver Yew takes a look at four clubs who would definitely remember the Ivory Coast international’s birthday…
PSG jump straight to the front of the queue to sign the world’s top players because their Qatari owners have serious cash to burn. The French side didn’t even blink twice when being quoted £50m by Chelsea to sign the defender who can’t defend David Luiz.
But getting hold of a midfielder with Yaya Toure’s quality would be an entirely different proposition and Les Parisiens would ask City to name their price in any pursuit for the former Barcelona man.
And with Toure recently saying it would be an “honour” to pull on the colours of PSG, Laurent Blanc and co would be confident of pulling off a deal if he became available.
Toure recently admitted (there’s a theme building here!) he would love the chance to finish his career at the Nou Camp.
Barcelona sold the Ivorian for £24m to City back in 2010 and have recently ruled themselves out of making a bid to bring back the powerful midfielder.
But with Real Madrid lurking in the shadows in the race to sign Toure, would the Catalan giants really let a Barca fans favourite make the move the Bernabeu?
Real Madrid would love nothing more than to anger rivals Barcelona with a move for former Barca star Toure.
Los Blancos, who have just completed a deal to sign Germany’s World Cup winning midfielder Toni Krros, have reportedly been offered the chance to sign the Manchester City star, who Arsene Wenger famously turned down as a youngster back in 2003, by the player’s agent Dimitri Seluk.
But with the Citizens unlikely to sanction any deal for a player who has three years left on his contract, Toure would have to force a move to the Bernabeu through with a transfer request.
It seems difficult to understand how Monaco could compete with the likes of PSG, Real Madrid and Barcelona for the services of Toure but as we know in football it is money that talks! The mega-rich club could throw together a financial package that could tempt any player in the world to the south of France and Toure would be no different.
The Ivory Coast international could be tempted back to the Rouges et Blancs having played for a season at Stade Louis II before making the move to La Liga with Barcelona.
But with the likes of Real, Barca and PSG circling it would be a surprise to see Toure lining up alongside Dimitar Berbatov next season!