Manchester City midfielder Nigel de Jong admits the skills he learned at Ajax no longer apply.

De Jong says football at the elite level is now a true battle.

"I have been now many years abroad and the technical things of Ajax do not help me anymore," admits De Jong. "It's a physical battlefield of excellence. You see one after the other, young players drown. There are only butchers.

"Physical, physical, physical. Everyone is bigger and stronger. Just look at the strikers that we have: Nicklas Bendtner, Mario Gomez, Cristiano Ronaldo, all bears."