Former Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure has claimed that Nemanja Matic was the hardest player he came up against in the Premier League.
The Ivorian, who spent eight years at Man City, left the club last year and is now playing in China.
Matic, meanwhile, continues to battle an unspecified injury and is tipped to leave Old Trafford in January after falling down the pecking order under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Reflecting on the hardest opponent he ever faced, Toure told The Times:”Nemanja Matic was complicated. He’s not quick but he’s so strong, clever.
“All the rest of the opponents, because I always looked at them carefully before games, I get their weakness.”
The game Toure is referring to, I believe, is when City were beaten at home by Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea in February 2014 – the first time that they had lost at home over the 2013-14 campaign.
That say, Matic was indomitable: all over the pitch but utterly composed at the same time, laying the basis for what was a faultless performance.
Five and a half years on, the Serbia international does not seem to possess that same level of control, but the football brain is still there.
Used sporadically and thoughtfully, Matic could yet be a highly useful asset for United at various points throughout this season. You can only hope that Solskjaer recognises this fact.