Since Pep Guardiola joined Manchester City, he’s made it clear that Yaya Toure doesn’t factor into his plans. Toure’s only appearance under Guardiola this season was in a Champions League qualifier against Steaua Bucharest. But now Guardiola is suggesting that the 33-year-old midfielder will have a way back onto the pitch…if he produces an apology for his outspoken agent.
“He must apologise. If he doesn’t, he won’t play,” Guardiola told reporters.
“It was difficult to leave him out of the Champions League squad but (the) day after, his (agent) went to the media. (Toure) has not had the courage to call me. From that moment he was out,” Guardiola said.
You might remember Toure’s agent, Dimitri Seluk, for orchestrating the infamous birthday cake debacle of 2014. Given that he was willing to damage his client’s reputation over a celebratory confection, it should come as no surprise that he has decided to bring a bazooka to Guardiola’s knife fight.
“What do I need to apologise for?,” he asked Sky Sports television. “Guardiola wins a few games and thinks he is a king. I live in Europe so I can say whatever I like and Guardiola can’t stop me.
“I will apologise to Guardiola if he will apologise to (former City manager) Manuel Pellegrini for what he did to him.”
That’s probably not going to improve the relationship here. But as hilariously undiplomatic as Seluk’s comments are, Guardiola is the one who comes off looking the most childish in this situation. By going to the press with this ultimatum, he’s inflaming an uncomfortable distraction for his team.
Anyway, there’s a good chance that “Dimitri Seluk” doesn’t actually exist and is actually just a character invented by Jose Mourinho.