Yaya Toure has joked that he could join Manchester United to “teach” Paul Pogba “some things”.
Toure will leave Manchester City at the end of his current contract after eight successful years in the Premier League.
The midfielder hopes to stay in England however, at a club playing in European competition.
He even joked that he would consider joining City’s bitter rivals United.
“Let’s see, let’s see,” he told the Manchester Evening News on the prospect of joining United. “I don’t rule big teams out. The big teams are very important for me. What they want to achieve, the way they want to go, for me is very important.
“I want to go somewhere I can win and achieve. It’s going to be hard one day to play against City, but I have to do that. It is part of my job. I’ve been playing football for such a long time, I’m no good in the office or something else. I am good in football.
“To see myself at a different club is going to be difficult. I have been such a big part of City for such a long time now. I just want to say that definitely I will continue to play at a high level – Champions League or Europa League. I want to play two more years. They have to be in the higher level and then I can do something else.”
Toure says that showing Pogba the ropes would be a big attraction for him.
“I love Paul Pogba. It’s difficult because of the way the media has treated him. We don’t have the same characteristics because for me I was involved in all the balls, I ran everywhere. I liked that. I was prepared for that. I was working for that for a long time.
“When I was in the academy in Africa I had to run everywhere, get box to box in 50 seconds.
“Pogba is the same size, power – but different in the way he wants to go, technically as well, the ability to score goals as well. It is a player I want to play with, to be honest, just to teach him some things.
“Pogba is a great player. He’s a fantastic player. He’s a little bit young at the moment.
“Criticism is a part of life. If they criticise you it’s because they want you to be good or be better. I’ve been criticised and I love to be criticised. I like it. I don’t mind if people talk about me – it’s good. It means I have to achieve, I have to be better. Even if you continue to be at the peak of your game, sometimes they are going to find something to tell you. It’s part of life. We have to deal with that.”
Asked if he saw United as a genuine option for his next club, Toure replied: “No, no, no, no. The fans are going to kill me!”