Manchester city will be without the services of both Kolo Toure and his brother Yaya Touré during the month of January and early February due to the Africa cup of nations.

Manchester city made the special request to the Ivory Coast national team manager to allow at least Yaya Touré play for a few matches before going out to the training camp. However, Ivory Coast have rejected any such advances on the part of Manchester City saying that the Africa cup of nations is as much important to them, as the Premier League and FA Cup is for Manchester City.

FIFA rules state that players are expected to be called by their national teams at least two weeks before a major tournament. The African cup of nations will be starting on January 21, and Yaya Touré is one of the important members of the Ivory Coast squad. Other Ivory Coast players like Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou have already left for the team preparations. However, Manchester City are in the position of incredible strength in the Premier League table, as the lead for the first time in the Premier League history. Yaya Touré has been one of the important members of the squad since his arrival from Barcelona in a £ 24 million deal.

“Clubs know the rules. I’m expecting them [the Toures] for the Fifa deadline. The national team in Ivory Coast is led by people who are well educated and I was surprised that people in England think that we don’t know the Fifa rules about dates,” Ivory Coast manager Zahoui told BBC Africa. A number of Premier League clubs will be losing African players over the next few months due to this major tournament, which happens once every two years. Arsenal have lost Gervinho, while Manchester United remain the only major team not to lose any player.