Belfast Telegraph

Toure edges nearer to Manchester City deal

Kolo Toure has taken another step towards joining the Manchester City revolution.

The Arsenal central defender was having a medical at the club today ahead of a possible £15million move.

Manager Mark Hughes turned to the 28-year-old after his efforts to bring in John Terry were rebuffed first by Chelsea, then by their captain.

Hughes's Arsenal counterpart Arsene Wenger has already conceded that Toure could leave the Emirates Stadium.

Toure struggled to find his best form last season after the African Nations Cup.

He was shunted out to right-back when Bacary Sagna got injured and went on to make 26 starts in the league.

Toure, however, is recognised as Arsenal's most established centre-back and the only remaining regular from the 'Invincibles' side of 2003/04.

A utility player when he arrived in 2002, the Ivorian quickly blossomed into a top-class defender.

He won over Wenger with his strength, pace and his ability to break up the play.

Toure's arrival would be City's sixth signing of the summer.

His former Arsenal team-mate Emmanuel Adebayor has already checked in, along with Carlos Tevez, Roque Santa Cruz, Gareth Barry and back-up goalkeeper Stuart Taylor.

It is understood that City are still keen on Everton's Joleon Lescott.

Meanwhile striker Valeri Bojinov is poised to seal a loan move to Parma.

City have confirmed the Bulgarian is currently in talks with the newly-promoted side.

Hughes is spoiled for choice when it comes to strikers and Ched Evans and Felipe Caicedo have both moved in the past week.

Signed by Sven-Goran Eriksson from Fiorentina, Bojinov's career at City has been blighted by injury.

The 23-year-old made his debut on the opening day of the 2007-08 season as a substitute at West Ham and was named in the starting 11 against Manchester United a week later.

Unfortunately he suffered a cruciate ligament injury after just six minutes. Ruled out for seven months, he was back in the reserves towards the end of the season.

He looked set for a second chance to shine at the start of last season, but after being named in the team against Aston Villa for the first game he ruptured ligaments in the warm-up.

Bojinov returned to action by the end of March and scored his first Premier League goal against Spurs on May 16.

Belfast Telegraph


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