Yaya Toure admits drink driving but says he's teetotal

Manchester City star, who does not touch alcohol for religious reasons, says he accidentally drank a brandy and Coke at a party

(Image credit: Alex Livesey / Stringer)

Yaya Toure's strange adventures in English football continue after he was convicted of drink driving despite insisting that he is teetotal.

The Ivory Coast international, who has rarely featured for Man City this season after his agent fell out with his manager Pep Guardiola, admitted the charge at a court hearing on Monday after being arrested in Dagenham, east London, on November 28.

"He was fined £54,000 – a means-tested fine – and banned from driving for 18 months by Barkingside magistrates," says the BBC.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

However, Toure told the court he had "not intentionally consumed alcohol" as he is a Muslim.

In a statement posted on Facebook the 33-year-old said: "I have always refused alcohol. Anyone who knows me or follows football will have seen me refuse champagne for Man of the Match performances because of my commitment to my religion.

"Drink driving is a serious crime and even though I was not intentionally consuming alcohol I accept the ban and fine and I would like to apologise for this situation."

Toure inadvertently consumed the drink at a house party where he poured himself what he thought was Diet Coke from a jug, but later discovered it was mixed with brandy, reports the Daily Telegraph. He had been the 'designated driver' on the night of the party and thought he was simply tired, despite being double the drink-drive limit.

"Toure told Barkingside magistrates he would be faced with considerable extra expenses if he was banned from driving, because he lives in London and works in Manchester, meaning he will now have to employ a driver," adds the paper.

"In December 2015 Toure escaped a driving ban when he was caught speeding at up to 101mph in his Porsche, after he claimed he had been confused by the car's speedometer, which was graded in kilometres per hour. He was instead given six penalty points."

Toure was recalled to the City squad last month after he apologised for comments from his agent, who accused manager Guardiola of "humiliating" Toure for leaving him out of City's Champions League squad.

However, the 33-year-old is now a fringe player at the Etihad and seems destined to leave at the end of the season, three years after he threatened to quit the club over the size of his birthday cake.

Continue reading for free

We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.

Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.