Toure ‘in love’ with defender ’10 times better’ than Pique

Joe Williams

Former Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has named his ultimate XI and named the defender who was “10 times better” than Gerard Pique.

The 35-year-old, who has designs on playing on for two more seasons, was a guest on Monday Night Football for Manchester City’s 3-0 win over Wolves last night.

Toure, who left Olympiakos in December after admitting he made a mistake signing for the Greek club, picked an attacking line-up, whilst claiming that his former Barcelona team-mate Rafael Marquez was considerably better than Pique, who has played over 400 times for the Catalans.

“Marquez was one of the toughest defenders,” Toure told Sky Sports. “People don’t remember him because he didn’t play in England. But if you want to remember him you have to go to YouTube and check what he was like at Barcelona. What a defender. He was 10 times better than Gerard Pique.

“He was similar, but Pique was taller. Believe me, he was 10 times better. He was so, so good. I’ve been in love with him.”

Toure picked his former Man City team-mate Ederson in goal and claimed: “I think with his hands and his legs, he’s one of the best I’ve played with. Victor Valdes was good with his legs, but was average to be honest. He was not bad, but at Barcelona he didn’t have to do much.”

Another City man, Vincent Kompany, makes his defence, along with former Barca stalwart Carles Puyol.

“Kompany is a safe house. You know you’re going to win with him. He’s a tractor and of course if I didn’t pick him he would smash me,” said Toure. “With Carles Puyol as well, those three players, to get the ball off them will be so difficult. You have to suffer to get the ball back.”

Toure named an attacking five-man midfield of Andres Iniesta, Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero, Leroy Sane, Thierry Henry.

Toure said: “I’m going to go for Iniesta as my holding midfielder. Why? Because he’s the only midfielder that I would have there given the others.

“I like a team that goes forward. Iniesta was the hardest player to get the ball off. Aguero can mix it up, he can spin, he can change it up, he can play midfield or as a forward.”

Toure picked Didier Drogba and Samuel Eto’o in his attack.

Youre added: “I’d go for these two because I played with Eto’o in Barcelona and what a striker he was. He was unbelievable and I also played with Drogba in the national team. As forwards, they are very difficult to mark.

“Eto’o was clever, smooth with his movement and Drogba could handle any cross, with the boot or with his head he could score at any time. He was brilliant.”