Ivory Coast midfielder Yaya Toure has confirmed that he is to retire from international football.
The Manchester City star, who has represented the Elephants on 102 occasions, scoring 19 goals, revealed the decision on social media on Tuesday:
The 33-year-old’s finest moment with the national side came in 2015, when he led the team to glory in the Africa Cup of Nations, beating Ghana via a penalty shootout in Equatorial Guinea; it was the first time the Ivory Coast had won the competition since 1992.
Toure was named captain of his country following the retirement of Didier Drogba in 2014 and also represented the Elephants at the 2006, 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cup.
“Writing this note was probably ‘the most difficult match of my life’.” read part of the City man’s statement. “After 14 years at the highest level, I’m sure this is the right time for me! The fact that I am 33 now, the intensity of training and the multitude of games are not the reasons why I am making this decision.”
While Toure will not be playing international football again any time soon, his prospects at the Etihad Stadium look bleak at the moment, with manager Pep Guardiola making it clear there’s some steps to be taken before he plays for City again, per Chris Wheeler of the Daily Mail:
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