Retired German footballer Dietmar ‘Didi’ Hamann certainly had an impact on English football during his 12 year career playing in English football.
He spent time at Newcastle United, Liverpool, MK Dons and even worked as head coach at Stockport County for a brief period of time. He also managed to score the last ever competitive goal at the old Wembley and win a Champions League medal in that time.
A holding midfielder with a penchant for shooting from range - nowadays he finds himself working mainly as a TV pundit.
Yesterday he did just that, joining former team-mate Robbie Fowler in the studio with host Gary Lineker.
And as part of his duties he was asked to run the rule over another of his former clubs - Manchester City.
After a transfer saga involving Liverpool, Bolton and City he joined the Citizens in July 2006 and played for the club for three years before being released in 2009.
But yesterday he was asked to comment on the performances of Yaya Toure - and he was quite clear in his assessment of the player … he cannot play as part of the midfield pair:
“I just think that at times, especially away from home, he can be a liability because he is a player who likes to go forward… time and time and time again today in the first-half, Shelvey, Bony, De Guzman, Shelvey, we see Shelvey here running off the back of him and they [Swansea City] had a few chances from 20 yards out…Here they are too flat, Fernandinho again has to adjust and they get in behind them - this is what defenders don’t want, they don’t want players running at them.”
What he suggested was that against Swansea City they got away with a more swashbuckling midfield - but against Barcelona for example in the Champions League, they will get taken apart.
He suggested that he seemed far more comfortable and effective after Javi Garcia entered the fray - to do the dirty work:
“I just think that the less of the defensive responsibilities he has the better he is…He doesn’t want to defend.”
However the other ex-pro’s in the studio were not so convinced with Lineker stating “first time I have heard him described as a liability” to which Fowler replied “what a liability he is though, I disagree with Didi to be honest.”
Toure has scored 12 goals in all competitions this season.
image: © marc_tacoma