Where Yaya Toure was made to work harder for Manchester City against Chelsea

Yaya Toure

With no Fernandinho in the middle of the park, and Chelsea putting in a strong midfield effort, City's number 42 had a lot of work to get through.

Yaya Toure is usually at the centre of a lot of good work in the Manchester City side. But last night his threat seemed to be nullified by the Chelsea midfield as City kept on looking to him for answers. Nemanja Matic put in a man-of-the-match performance while David Luiz also got through his fair share of work.

Toure is a big physical presence in the middle of the park, and the statistics below show that Chelsea relished the physical battle with him - with an above average amount of duels both won and lost. This could be down to the absence of Fernandinho in the middle of the park, with the onus on Toure to do some of the legwork that his usual midfield partner would do.

NameTeamPosDuel LostAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 7 1 90
NameTeamPosDuel Lost / appsAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 5.22 23 2,002
NameTeamPosDuel Won / appsAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 4.70 23 2,002
NameTeamPosDuel WonAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 11 1 90

Combine these numbers with the amount of tackles that Toure had to make in yesterday's game.

Toure isn't renowned for his tackling in the middle of the park, more his pace, power and creativity with the ball, but given the overwhelming dominance Chelsea had in the middle of the park when they were in possession, Toure was forced to undertake an unfamiliar role. Having averaged less than two tackles a game over the course of the season, he was forced to do three times the work in that department.

NameTeamPosTotal Tackle / appsAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 1.74 23 2,002
NameTeamPosTotal TackleAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 6 1 90

With a player that great it is hard to keep him completely anonymous in the game though the visiting side certainly did seem to nullify a lot of the Ivorian's attacking threat, with his two notable bright sparks in the game was a chance for David Silva and a shot from distance that went over the cross bar.

But here are a couple of numbers that suggests there was an over reliance on Toure to force the issue with his forward passing play significantly higher than on average.

NameTeamPosFwd Pass / appsAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 21.26 23 2,002
NameTeamPosFwd PassAppsMins
Yaya Touré Man City MF 31 1 90

For all of City's quality on the field, they were still relying on the star midfielder to get them through the game. Though you could suggest if Fernandinho was in the side you could argue some of the weight will have been lifted off the Ivorian's shoulders.

Nevertheless it illustrates that Toure was made to work harder than he was perhaps comfortable with in the middle of the park.

image: © marc_tacoma

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