Monday, May 20News That Matters

Nemanja Matic names Man City star as his toughest ever opponent

Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic has named former Manchester City star Yaya Toure as the toughest opponent he has ever faced.

Toure played 230 matches for City during his eight-year spell at the club, winning three Premier Leagues, one FA Cup, two League Cups and a Community Shield.

The Ivory Coast international, who was known for his physical attributes both in attack and defence, also scored a number of key goals for the club, most notably the only goals in the FA Cup semi-final against United and in the final against Stoke City.

And Matic, who has struggled for game time at Old Trafford so far this campaign, put his Manchester rivalries aside to hail the role Toure played in City’s successes between 2010 and 2018.

‘The toughest player I played against was probably Yaya Toure, when he played at Manchester City,’ The Serbia international said.

‘In his prime, he was a very good player – probably one of the best players in the Premier League and one of the best midfielders in the world at that time.

‘So I really enjoyed playing against him. He always gave me a hard time and you always had to be at your best against him so probably him.’

Meanwhile, the 33-year-old midfielder also revealed that he has plans to go into management when he finishes his playing career.

‘That’s kind of the plan. I started my coaching badges but I don’t think yet about this,’ he added.

‘I focus on my job now in football. I think I have still got four or five more seasons to play. After that, we will see but, at the moment, I am only focusing on playing football.’

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