He’s had a terrible season at Spurs, frustrating the fans with his poor performances, yet without Emmanuel Adebayor on Wednesday night, Tottenham probably wouldn’t have got a point from their match with Chelsea. The Togolese striker scored a stunner to level the scores at 1-1, before his delicate back-heel assisted Gylfi Sigurdsson to equalise for the second and last time just minutes before the full time whistle.
A rare, superb display by the forward, scoring his seventh goal in all competitions for Spurs this season. And yet such a great performance can frustrate so many fans. Tottenham’s faithful will be asking why he doesn’t play like that every week. Often criticised for being lazy and uninterested most of the time, Adebayor looked like a man proving a point at Stamford Bridge. With AVB supposedly looking to bring in a new striker in the summer, maybe Adebayor was proving he still has what it takes at White Hart Lane, or maybe he was just desperate to get into the Champions League. For whatever reason, the former Arsenal star was on top of his game
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A professional performance from a man who has been completely unprofessional at Tottenham all season. The forward struggled from the off this campaign, scoring his first goal in November against Arsenal before getting sent off. After getting his third goal in all competitions by the second day of 2013, the majority of supporters weren’t too upset to see him jet off to the African Cup of Nations. Adebayor appeared four times for Togo, and although he only scored once, he played much better than when wearing the white of Tottenham.
And yet when he came back, Manu was still struggling in a Spurs shirt. He upset Tottenham fans instantly, with his delayed return from the African Cup of Nations. With Jermain Defoe out injured, Spurs needed Adebayor. But he was still in Africa, where he claimed there was no travel arranged for him to return, after he was asked to meet the Togo President with the rest of the team. Supporters may have forgiven him eventually, but they were still frustrated with his performances when he returned. Knowing he was a good player, it was difficult to give an explanation as to why Adebayor was failing to make a positive impact.
But the chant “He scores when he wants” seems to be appropriate when it comes to Adebayor. A temperamental player, the draw against Chelsea showed Spurs fans he still has the quality they saw when he first joined the club. And yet the fact the Togo forward decides not to play with the same energy or desire in all of Tottenham’s matches, let alone score goals such as on Wednesday night, has left Spurs supporters in pain.
Never looking hungry, or energetic, Adebayor has been a frustrating player to watch. Chelsea fans may suffer from seeing Torres struggle to score, but at least they see the Spaniard try hard to get on the score sheet. But with Adebayor, there appears to be a lack of drive, and just the occasional piece of magic which makes most Tottenham fans keep the faith with the former City forward, before once again letting them down with a string of goalless, effortless matches.
After he demanded such high wages when Spurs made his loan deal permanent, you would expect the striker to work hard to remind the club why they pay him approximately £100,000-a-week. Instead, Daniel Levy watches his money trudge along the pitch, with no desire to bust a gut. And then when everyone starts to question the striker, once every one or two months, he plays closer to his 100% talent, to ease supporters’ woes. And then the cycle loops, ending disappointment with one brief, yet quality performance, before reverting back to his normal, lazy state of disinterest. He may well have been crucial in Tottenham’s 2-2 draw with Chelsea, but if the club are serious about becoming a Champions League team, they are best off chucking the man sucking up their wages, and bring in a hungry, energetic forward instead.