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'I had not intentionally consumed alcohol': Yaya Toure apologises to fans for drink driving

The 33-year-old has pleaded guilty to the charge.

The incident happened in London last month.
The incident happened in London last month.
Image: John Walton

MANCHESTER CITY MIDFIELDER Yaya Toure has accepted his charge for drink driving, but insists he did not consume alcohol intentionally.

The 33-year-old was fined £54,000 and banned from driving for 18 months after being stopped and tested by police in Dagenham last month.

Toure pleaded guilty to the charge at a court hearing on Monday but in a statement released on his website, the Ivory Coast international said that he would never knowingly drink because of his religious beliefs.

“Over the last two weeks there has been some confusion as to why I was charged with drink driving, as it is well-known that I am a Muslim and do not drink,” he 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.

“The matter has now been resolved in court on Monday. As I was above the permitted limit when tested on the night, I decided not to challenge the charge. However, it was important to me that I told the court that I had not intentionally consumed alcohol. The judge in his sentencing remarks accepted that I had not been intentionally drinking.

“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. I would also like to thank my family, the management and staff at Manchester City, my legal team and the fans for the support they have given me during this difficult time.”

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