|Great Read on EMMANUEL
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|Author:||Senator WIRES [ Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:22 am ]|
|Post subject:||Great Read on EMMANUEL|
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/footb ... l#comments
A friend picked up my Nokia. He said Wenger is on the line. I said 'Yeah, yeah, don't be silly, put the phone down'. It rang again. I picked it up and it really was him!'
'I hear 'Hallo!',' he says, perfecting his Wenger impression. 'I was like 'You are interested? I am more interested!' I will be there tomorrow for you. He said 'Keep calm'. Two days later, it was done. He said 'Any conditions?' All I wanted was Nwankwo Kanu's shirt number 25 and his locker. He was my idol. Wenger said 'Your wish is granted!' Amazing.'
Yet after three years, relations deteriorated. As Wenger sought to balance the books, Adebayor departed. He was not the only one and he is quickly exasperated.
'Kolo, Fabregas, Clichy, Van Persie,' he says, picking up the pace. 'They all left. I don't think Arsenal have shown love to keep players. You are on huge money at Arsenal. But if you can double your salary, we are footballers and in 10 years, it is over.
If you are Cesc, going to Barcelona, he will make more money, more sponsorship, and he is going home. What did Arsenal do to keep him at the club? Absolutely nothing. Now the fans say he is not loyal. When you leave Arsenal, you become a traitor, regardless of what you have done. Van Persie was the same.'
How did Wenger respond to the celebration? 'Wenger had nothing to tell me anyway. People think football is family. It is business.
'I did not just wake up one morning at Manchester City. I had signed a five-year contract at Arsenal. I came back for pre-season and Wenger said 'You have to leave'. I said 'Why should I leave?' I asked for one more year and if it does not work, I will walk off. He's like 'No.' He said if I stayed he would not put me in the squad. When you hear that, you have to go.'
'I remember getting to the stadium and Arsenal fans were there. All I heard was the the chant 'Your mother is a whore and your father washes elephants.' My father worked in currency exchange and my mother is a businesswoman. But this went on and on. So how can I reply? I didn't have a voice to go against thousands of supporters.
'We had a leaky roof. I woke up every night to dry it out with a bucket. We had no electricity. We used candles and lanterns. We did not have a toilet. To ease ourselves, we walked a mile to the beachside. It would be like dropping your shorts on Miami beach. The wind was unbelievable, so you can imagine... but that was my life.
'We went into different neighbourhoods to find a television to watch football but I did not believe the players on the screen were real. I thought it was a game where you drop pictures into the black box.
'I was 16,' he says. 'All I wanted to do was help my family out but they put huge pressure on me. I could not cope with it. When a family is poor, everyone is poor and there is huge solidarity. People will take a bullet for you. But when one makes it, it is like you owe everyone.
'At Metz I was on maybe £3,000 a month. My family asked for a house worth £500,000. The club were tired of me because of my behaviour. I remember sitting on my bed one night and just thinking 'What am I doing here? Nobody's happy with me, so what is the point of living?'
'There was a pharmacy below my apartment. I bought packet after packet of tablets. They did not want to sell it to me but I said it was for a charity in Togo. I made the preparations, I drank all the water. I was ready to go. Then I called my best friend at midnight.
His favourite team-mate? He grins. 'Craig Bellamy. He comes straight to you. 'You know what Emmanuel, today you were $#%.' Others in football whisper at the back.'
At Arsenal, there were disagreements with Van Persie and Nicklas Bendtner. 'Why would I come to an interview, lie to people and say Van Persie is my best friend? He has his character and I have mine. There was tension.'I'm a free guy, I come to every club, walk into the changing room and sing. I danced with Thierry Henry and had huge respect for Dennis Bergkamp. But at Arsenal, when you walk into the dressing room, there is a shoe rack.
'You take off your trainers and wear the club sandals into the dressing room. Bendtner walked in with his own shoes twice. I said: 'Bendtner, there is a law here and nobody is above it.' He was younger than me and barely playing.
'We are bigger than you but nobody else walks in with Prada, Gucci... He said 'I don't care'. I said 'Don't do it again'. The next day, he did the same and we jumped into a fight.'
His analysis of Arsenal's shortcomings under Wenger are cutting. 'Wenger is a beautiful manager,' Adebayor says. 'But no matter the situation, we had to play our football. I remember those days going to Stoke.'
He blows out his cheeks. 'You know it's a heavy afternoon with Rory Delap's throw. I'm a big guy but what about the rest of the team? We came out of the dressing room in the corridor and you hear clink, clink...the studs from Stoke... and just think 'Oh my God'. Shawcross, Huth, Crouch... Then you see our team of 60kg players.
'We had quality but for some games, I am sorry, it was not enough. United and Chelsea were technical but so strong. Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic. Rio insulted everyone on the pitch. He is proper psycho!
'But Vidic was the tough man, the nastiest, like running into a rock. He could block a striker with a single finger. He walks on you, he says sorry, he kicks you, he says sorry. He shouts at you and makes a little bit of spit come out. This guy was ready to kill.'
Did Arsenal hurt from defeats like United did? 'We swallowed defeats. Games where I scored and we lost 2-1, I thought my job was done. Rio would have come to me 'if you want to be happy, score three.' I saw him argue with Rooney and Giggs.
'These are the things we didn't have. We were nice. We had a gentlemen team. We play, we pass around but when it comes to being dirty, we couldn't.'
During a loan spell at Real Madrid, Adebayor saw Wenger's antithesis in Jose Mourinho. '
One is calm and the other is not. I remember we were losing 2-1 and we were playing badly. Thierry Henry was going mental. Wenger came in and said 'Calm down, we are perfect, 65 per cent of the ball, we have crossed 25 times'. Thierry is telling me 'Who cares? We are losing'. That is the difference between Wenger and Mourinho.
'At Real, we were winning 3-0 at half-time. He came into the dressing room and went mental. He kicked the fridge, threw water, killed everyone.
'He once killed Ronaldo after he scored a hat-trick. He said: 'Everyone says you are the best in the world and you are playing badly. Show me you are the best.' Cristiano took it.
'Ronaldo could score a hat-trick but talk about the one he missed. He trained with us at Madrid as though he was training with his kids. Passes with his back, control with his neck. He once kept the ball for five seconds with one touch! How is that possible? In the gym, wow. Sergio Ramos and I were the strongest. But then came Ronaldo. 'You think that's hard?' he'd say. We'd do five reps and he'd do 30.' He pauses and there is introspection. 'If I was open to those criticisms like Cristiano, when I was younger, I would have been a different player and had one more step up.'
The smile returns. He staggers to his feet. 'I'm having fun here in Istanbul. We have me, Robinho, Arda Turan, Gael Clichy. I was with him at Manchester City, then Arsenal, now here. I would not be surprised if he bought land in Togo without telling me!
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