Guilty City star Toure out until September for failing drug test

MANCHESTER CITY defender Kolo Toure has revealed the heartache he suffered at missing out on the climax of the club’s historic campaign after being handed a six-month ban for using a banned substance earlier this season.

The suspension is back-dated to 2 March, when Toure’s provisional ban began, and ends on 2 September meaning the Ivory Coast international is likely to miss at least the first four games of the new season which starts on 13 August.

“This has been a difficult period, and I am sad to have missed the team’s triumph of securing Champions League football and the FA Cup,” Toure said. “But I am relieved that I will be able to return to football in September and thank the FA’s commission for their understanding.”

The decision caps a troubled year for the 30-year-old who lost the club captaincy to Carlos Tevez in August before being tested at the Manchester derby in February, when he was an unused substitute.

The former Arsenal star was suspended on 3 March after his A-sample tested positive for “a specified substance”.

An independent regulatory commission headed up by Christopher Quinlan QC, which had the power to issue a ban of up to two years, was satisfied and took the sympathetic view that Toure did not intend to enhance sporting performance or to mask the use of a performance-enhancing substance.