Is Yaya best player in EPL?

JOHANNESBURG - Since galloping more than 60 metres from his own half with the ball firmly under his control and holding off a defender to score one of the most amazing goals ever, many think Ivorian Yaya Toure should have been named Player of the Year in the English Premier League.

Others argue that if voting closed this coming Sunday, then there could not have been any debate on the most valued player in the Premiership.

Toure has been majestic this season. He has scored 20 goals from midfield and imposed his quality on the league.

But the highlight of the imposing midfielder came on Wednesday evening. Aston Villa was keen on playing with 10 men behind the ball and intent on catching their opponents on a counter-attack. But once Edin Dzeko opened the scoring midway through the second half, the floodgates opened up.

Yet in that 4-0 demolition, it was the fourth goal which was to be an icing on the cake forcing journalists to search for better words to describe that amazing strike.

America Today, a journal that normally writes very little about football had this to say about the goal: “Yaya Toure doesn’t seem fair. Like, his mere existence doesn’t seem fair. How can someone that big and strong be that fast and that skilled with the ball? It doesn’t make any sense.”

Although Luis Suarez beat him to both the players’ and the writers’ Footballer of the Year awards, those decisions are always a subject for fierce debate. If the voting had closed this coming Sunday, many think the winner could have been in no doubt.

According to one of the English football writers with the Guardian, if Manchester City clinch the title by drawing or beating West Ham at the Etihad tomorrow, missing out on those awards is unlikely to cost Toure any sleep.

Earning US$15 million a year, the 30 years has always argued that his value is diminished by the fact that he is from Africa.

The 1,91-metre tall player who has been voted Africa’s Footballer of the Year in 2011, 2012 and 2013 argues that had he been from Europe or America, people would be talking of him in the same breath as that of Messi or Ronaldo.

But if you are from Africa, few people have respect of your achievements.

Yes, few will argue with the value Luis Suarez brought to Liverpool but on overall contribution, Toure has had an outstanding season.

His defensive attributes have shored up the otherwise suspect City defence while Toure has been the creator of goals in the midfield; and whenever he takes a crack at goal, his strikes have often given goalkeepers lots of problems. He is a free-kick specialist and a complete player in the sense of the word.

He is not a controversial figure and carries on with his duties showing little emotions even when he scores vital goals.

Many still argue, that had the big midfielder been from any other parts of the world, other than Africa, the larger than life figure would be a living legend already.


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