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Report: Yaya Toure will stay with Man City; Did United bid for him?

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Granted it’s only July, but Yaya Toure has cooled off the rumors that he wants out of Manchester City.

Two months of apparent blather regarding dissatisfaction with City due to snubbed birthday celebrations and a dearth of flowers, found fuel added to the fire by The Daily Star’s report claiming that Manchester United had bid $68 million for the Ivory Coast superstar.

And according to Toure, it’s all a part of silly season.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Yaya says he’s ready to stay at the Etihad Stadium and defend his club’s Premier League title:

“There has been a lot of speculation but they’ve always been good with me and good with my family,” he told Sky Sports News.

“I want to say that I will always honour my contract and stay as long as possible and don’t think about all the speculation saying that I’m leaving. For the fans for all they have done for me and the club as well, I need to say it’s a big pleasure to stay and continue and try to enjoy the next season.

“Everything is fine now. There was a lot of speculation about people sending me away and people were sending me everywhere.”

Well, everything is fine now. But it wasn’t before. Or it was. Or it wasn’t.

Perhaps his comments are coming on the heels of the Manchester United bid report. Certainly, Louis van Gaal’s efforts to return Manchester United to the UEFA Champions League would’ve been handed a huge boost by stealing a man from his rivals. Yaya Toure would also allow United to sell Wayne Rooney if they wanted, turning their attacking focus to a mix of Yaya, Juan Mata and Robin van Persie.

In any event, now it seems we can go back to praising the stellar midfielder’s play. And by that, we mean following his agent’s lead on whether racism is keeping Yaya from winning awards.

Hilarious “Friends” spoof video ‘starring’ Messi, Ronaldo (video)

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Given the rivalry surrounding the two megawatt superstars plying their trade in Spain, you may be surprised to learn that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the best of friends.

[ MORE: Top USMNT-Mexico rivalry moments ]

At least that’s what this spoof video conveys, as the Real Madrid and Barcelona stars help each other navigate tax season and toilet troubles.

Brilliant stuff, from FootbOle:

Top USMNT-Mexico moments: Looking back ahead of Saturday

PASADENA, CA - JUNE 25:  Landon Donovan #10 of United States celebrates his goal with teammates Carlos Bocanegra #3 and Alejandro Bedoya #22  against Mexico during the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup Championship at the Rose Bowl on June 25, 2011 in Pasadena, California.  (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
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You could argue its the biggest match between the U.S. and Mexico outside of the 2002 World Cup’s Round of 16, and there would be few arguments against you.

The United States and Mexico will tangle on Saturday at the Rose Bowl, with the winner advancing to the 2017 Confederations Cup finals in Russia.

It’s only so often that these rivals match up in a “do or die” match. Sure World Cup qualifiers carry critical import, but they don’t always become the decisive moment in the qualifying cycle.

[ MORE: Spurs’ teen shining at center back for U.S. U-23s ]

Aside from the aforementioned World Cup match and the first match in the rivalry — see 1934 below — no other match has carried as much international weight as Saturday.

So with anticipation high, let’s dance backward in time to the Yanks’ best moments in the rivalry. And let’s also imagine what would have to happen to put Saturday in the mix.

(Of course, our apologies to Mexican fans. We aren’t including the times you slapped American soccer in the face).

2001, 2005, 2009, 2013 — “Dos a Cero” to the fourth power

There is no more celebrated score line in USMNT history than the 2-0 hurting it put on Mexico in four successive home World Cup qualifiers.

2002 — World Cup Round of 16

Goals from Brian McBride and Landon Donovan prodded an upset of the world’s then-No. 7 ranked nation, as the USMNT carried a feel of destiny through its best World Cup.

1934 — World Cup qualifier

Aldo Donnelli scored all four goals as the States won the first recorded match against Mexico, and it was a big one. The winner would go on to the 1934 tournament in Italy, while the loser would go on a tour of European friendlies. The States won, and wouldn’t win again until the qualifiers for the 1982 tournament.

2012 — First win at Azteca

It may’ve been a friendly, but Michael Orozco’s finish will go down as the Yanks’ first ever winner in the fortress of Mexico City.

1980 — World Cup qualifier

Though it meant little to the Yanks’ fate in the 1982 tournament — the U.S. finished last in a group with Mexico and Canada — it was the first win over El Tri in 46 years.