Yaya Toure criticism was not deserved, says Man City's Frank Lampard

Yaya Touré interview

Frank Lampard has expressed his disappointment at the criticism aimed at Yaya Toure in recent weeks.

Toure has come under criticism in recent weeks, with his performances at the start of the season not up to the extremely high standards.

His performance in Saturday’s game at Aston Villa appeared to be going down the same disappointing path, with misplaced passes and uncharacteristic touches summing up his game, until the last 10 minutes brought a display channelling those shown last season - and capped with the opening goal in City’s 2-0 victory.

With Villa sitting deep to frustrate City, Toure curled a long-range left-footed strike past Brad Guzan to keep the Premier League holders within touching distance of league leaders Chelsea.

However, teammate Frank Lampard, who has been City’s standout midfielder this season with the poor performances of Toure, was not surprised to see the 31-year-old Ivorian hit back at his critics with his match-winning display.

Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, former Chelsea man Lampard said: "He did what great players do and I was pleased for him because I have seen this happen with so many players.

“When you are at the top of your game, the minute you don’t score so many goals, or this or that is going on, people will criticise you.

“I loved it when he scored and he deserved it, because top players will perform at the right time.”

Toure has reportedly been unsettled at the Etihad since the end of last season, whilst the death of his brother during the summer took importance away from footballing matters. He was ultimately disappointing at the World Cup, and, whilst his form had failed to pick up in the early weeks of the season, the focus upon off-pitch matters should never have been taken as a way to criticise Toure. Lampard was quick to reference the ease with which information is accessed, claiming that it brings out negative opinions at every instance.

“It’s the modern day. There are so many words spoken about football in newspapers, on radio and TV and we are very quick to jump on our players in a negative way.

“Yaya has answered it, and put it to bed. Now we will see the best out of him.”

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