Yaya Toure says the way Manchester United celebrated Thursday’s 0-0 draw shows how far Manchester City have come since he joined the club.
City dominated the Manchester derby with 69 percent possession and 19 shots compared to United’s three but couldn’t find a way past goalkeeper David de Gea.
The result keeps City above their rivals and means United remain outside the top-four as both sides battle to secure a Champions League place for next season.
But United players and supporters appeared happy with the stalemate at full-time and Toure says it’s a far cry from when he first joined City in 2010 when Sir Alex Ferguson’s side controlled the Premier League.
“Yeah, it is a big change because in the past United were always able to dominate,” the Ivorian told reporters. “They were always able to control and win games, and seeing the fans celebrating like that it shows that City have come close.
“Of course, the history and achievements of United is much stronger but we are coming. They know now we are difficult to play and they tried to do their best to defend and use the counter-attack. To be honest we played well but when you don’t win it is difficult to take it.”
City have finished above their neighbours in five of the six seasons since he moved to the Etihad and they look now like favourites to do it again as they have the easier run-in of the two sides.
But it’s still a season of under-achievement in the Premier League for the Manchester clubs, who had been expected to competing for the title following the arrival of big name managers Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho.
Toure expects both sides to be more competitive next season and joked that United might even try to score when the two teams play each other again.
“All the time we finish above them in the season, it shows City are doing very well,” he said. “[On Thursday] we missed that last pass or goal. Credit to them. At the back they were very strong and my friend Bailly was very good.
“United are building something very interesting. We have to be aware of that but I think City are going to be much, much stronger as well. Next year we are going to expect more and I hope United are going to attack a little bit more.
“City are always fighting for the title and this year was quite difficult, quite disappointing, because we have been frustrated at playing well, control the opponent, dominate the game, but then you see the result at the end and we’ve lost or we win by a small gap. We need to work on our finishing to be honest.”