Moussa Sissoko has heaped praise on Ivorian Yaya Toure, whom he expects to face on Saturday afternoon when Manchester City host Newcastle.
The 23-year-old believes that the Premier League title-winner is a positive role model for him, and hopes to have a similar career to the former Barcelona midfielder.
Sissoko told The Sun: “Toure is definitely a player I admire a lot. He's had a fantastic career at all the clubs he's been and won a lot of things.
“He’s a huge player for Manchester City.
“I do think we have got similar styles — we're both powerful players and both like to get forward and try to score goals.
“Toure is Toure and I'm my own man but he is definitely someone I look up to.
“If I could reach that level that would be great.
“It's something to aim for and obviously I hope I can.
“But I don't think I'm there yet — not at all.
“He's been lucky enough to play regularly in the Champions League and I've yet to play in that competition.
“He has a lot more experience than me. There's a lot of work ahead for me if I want to reach his level.
“But I will do everything possible to get there and I'll try to model myself on him. One day I'd love to think I could be as good as him.”
The midfielder also spoke of his excitement at playing against the current Premier League champions, insisting it is games like these which made him accept the challenge of joining Newcastle.
He continued: “[Manchester] City are one of the best teams in the land — it's a massive match and very important for us.
“I've watched a lot of them in the last couple of years and in that time they've made some incredible signings.
“They have some massive players there.
“Obviously they were champions last year so they are a big team and it's going to be very hard for us.
“One of the reasons I came to Newcastle was to play against big clubs like Manchester City and Chelsea."