Yaya's form a boon for Elephants

2015-02-05 16:36
Yaya Toure (AFP)

Bata - Yaya Toure remains much of an enigma at international level but glimpses of his club form at the African Nations Cup is a major boon for Ivory Coast as they prepare for Sunday's final.

"Yaya has never before got his level for the national team," said coach Herve Renard of his captain after their 3-1 win over the Democratic Republic of Congo in Bata on Wednesday saw the Elephants to their third final in 10 years.

"But he has worked, he has scored and he has played with a lot of determination. To have players like him, Gervinho, Wilfried Bony in the team is to work with fantastic talent.

"The Ivorian side is one under reconstruction but these are the pillars," added Renard.

The 31-year-old Toure has played at every Nations Cup since 2006, making his appearance at the finals in Equatorial Guinea a sixth. On top of that he has also participated at three successive World Cup finals.

But Sunday's final against either Equatorial Guinea or Ghana presents his first chance at a winners medal with his national team, to add to Champions League success with Barcelona in 2009 -- when he was played at centre back -- and league winners medals in Greece, Spain and England.

He also scored the winner in the 2011 FA Cup final where Manchester City ended a 35-year wait for a trophy with a 1-0 win over Stoke City.

Toure's record-breaking four successive African Footballer of the Year awards have all come on the back of his performances at club level but Renard hopes Ivory Coast will now reap a winning contribution from him too.

The testy Frenchman is the first coach to openly challenge Toure and the other 'galacticos' in the side.

A touchline tirade from the coach, occasionally directed at Toure when Renard feels he is not contributing, is something new for a player who, with many others in past Ivorian sides, had an untouchable aura.

The coach has taken him off in several matches after taking over last August in another departure from the norm.

But being treated like all others seems to resonate with Toure, who could finally produce the kind of contribution his country have been craving.

Read more on:    ivory coast  |  afcon 2015  |  yaya toure  |  soccer

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk


Bafana Bafana have been drawn with Cameroon, Gambia and Mauritania in the qualification stages for the 2017 AFCON tournament. Where will Shakes Mashaba's men finish in their pool?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.