Kolo Toure believes Bukayo Saka is approaching his ‘Michael Jordan moment’ as he picked the winger as the one current Arsenal star who would be at home alongside the ‘Invincibles’.
Saka and his team-mates head to Manchester City on Wednesday night for a Premier League title showdown.
The Gunners have drawn their last three games and now sit five points clear at the summit, having played two more games than their closest rivals.
It means the midweek clash at the Etihad Stadium is likely to go a long way to determining the destination of the title this season, with Arsenal in search of their first Premier League crown in 19 years.
Toure was a part of the team that season and went on to win the league at City in 2012 and he is a big fan of Saka, backing the England international to potentially make the difference on Wednesday.
“This is the first time he has had that pressure,” he replied when asked about Saka dealing with the expectations on his shoulders.
“But it is money time now. This is when Michael Jordan made his money. When he made the difference.
“They would give him the ball when the pressure was on and they would look for the guy who could make the difference.
“The Arsenal team have Saka and this boy has a special talent, definitely. He’s been carrying that team very well this season.
“In the games coming, he has to show that. It’s not about age. It’s about talent. He has unbelievable talent and desire. He loves that club and I’m sure this is a player who can really push the team up.”
Toure’s title at Arsenal came during an unbeaten season under Arsene Wenger in 2004 and the former Ivory Coast defender selected Saka as the member of the current ranks he would have liked in that squad.
Asked who would be at home in the ‘Invincibles’ team, he replied: “Obviously, Saka.
“This boy has a special talent. He has passion, he has desire. He has technique, he has everything.
“I have been very impressed with what he is doing and for me, as a football man who has been in the game for a long time, watching the game, if the game is easy, it is quite boring.
“But when I watch a game and it is tight and I see one player willing to take the ball under pressure and make the difference – that is what we love.
“But this moment is special because it is the first time he is facing all this. But there is always a first time for everybody. If that time is now, Arsenal can benefit. Definitely.”
Toure believes City are favourites for the title as they have found momentum at the right time – but that does not mean he thinks Pep Guardiola’s side will inevitably take the points against Arsenal.
“With the momentum Man City have, they are the favourites right now, in my opinion,” he added.
“I still believe that Arsenal made City suffer a lot this season. The last game I watched, City were struggling against them, definitely. If Arsenal just play the same way and don’t make mistakes, they can surprise Man City, definitely.”
Asked if Guardiola’s side were good enough to win the Treble by adding FA Cup and Champions League glory to potential title success, Toure added: “Absolutely.
“They have the manager. They have the players and I definitely think they can, because they have everything, really. Everything you need to win the treble.”