Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure feels he is often a target of undeserved criticism.
The Ivorian was blasted for his contribution as City failed to defend their Premier League crown last season and suffered a last-16 elimination from the Champions League at the hands of his former club Barcelona.
In September, former Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes labelled Toure a “liability” due to his defensive shortcomings.
The 32-year-old – who is a nominee for the 2015 CAF Player of the Year and has been awarded the accolade in each of the past four years – has hit out at his critics and thinks his previous accomplishments prove his quality.
“Lots of people try to dishonour my name, to say b******* about me, but I know that there are many young people who look up to me,” Toure said in an interview with L’Equipe.
“When people insult you, don’t answer, because they understand nothing. And when people don’t love you, fortunately, records and statistics speak for me.”
Toure was part of the Ivory Coast side that won the Africa Cup of Nations in 2015, but he also feels underappreciated in his home nation.
“With the Ivory Coast, it’s the same thing. When you see people hate you when you come to defend the colors of your country, it hurts you,” Toure added.
“People denigrated me, politicians began to insult me. It hurts me. The national team doesn’t have anything to do with football anymore.
“I love my country. If I was resentful, yes, I would have said: ‘I’m leaving’.”