Pellegrini: All Yaya needs is time
Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini has dismissed the criticism levelled at star midfielder Yaya Toure.
The Ivorian midfielder was the top Premier League goalscorer for the Citizens last term with 20 goals, but has struggled to reach the same decisive peak this season. Pellegrini believes the drop-off is normal, but has backed Yaya to get back to top form soon.
Speaking ahead of their away trip to CSKA Moscow in midweek, the Chilean manager said “I don’t agree that Yaya has had a bad season. Maybe if you compare his performances this year to last season, when he had a brilliant performance, maybe he just needs time to get back to that level.
“But he continues to be a very important player for our team, especially as he showed two games ago against Aston Villa. Every game he is playing better. He had a very complicated summer, but I think now he is arriving back towards his normal performance.”
The Premier League champions find themselves chasing early pacesetters Chelsea in the title race, and have been poor in European competition. They find themselves behind Bayern Munich and Roma, with just a point from a possible six. Yaya has been one of those fingered as City have struggled to assert themselves in Europe.
“I don’t think this team just depends on one player,” said Pellegrini. “If we didn’t play well in some games before, it’s because the whole team didn’t play well, not only Yaya.”