Monday 27 May 2019

Spurs grant Emmanuel Adebayor compassionate leave to resolve personal issues

Emmanuel Adebayor has spent most of the season on the bench
Emmanuel Adebayor has spent most of the season on the bench

Matt Law

Emmanuel Adebayor has been granted compassionate leave by Tottenham Hotspur for a second time this season to return to Togo to sort out his personal issues.

Spurs head coach Mauricio Pochettino has excused Adebayor from training this week and the final game of the season against Everton at Goodison Park on Sunday. He will not travel on the post-season tour to Malaysia and Sydney.

Adebayor has made a series of allegations against his family over Facebook in recent weeks that have prompted concerns over his mental state.

The latest of his messages accused brother Kola of holding a knife to his throat and included claims that he has often considered suicide as a result of his family problems.

Tottenham want to sell Adebayor during the summer, meaning he could have already played his last game for them, but the club’s immediate concern is the player’s well-being.

It is hoped that giving Adebayor time off to clear his head and return to his homeland will allow the 31-year-old to sort out his problems and grievances in time to return to pre-season training, either at Tottenham or with another club, in the correct frame of mind.

Rejecting claims that he had evicted his mother from his house in Africa, Adebayor claimed people were attempting to direct witchcraft, or Juju, at him.

Adebayor was then given compassionate leave by Spurs in December after a close family member was taken seriously ill.

Having taken a week off, Adebayor returned to Tottenham before Christmas but has made only five appearances since then, starting just one game.

Adebayor still has a year remaining on his Spurs contract and chairman Daniel Levy faces the prospect of having to take a financial hit on the former Arsenal man to offload him this summer.

There is virtually no prospect of any clubs agreeing to match Adebayor’s £100,000-a-week wages, which means Levy can expect to pay out at least £2.5 million to cover the shortfall on his remaining 12 months.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood could turn to Adebayor if he has to find a replacement for Liverpool target Christian Benteke. The pair enjoyed a close and fruitful working relationship at Spurs.

West Ham United were close to signing Adebayor on loan in January, but Levy refused to deal with Tottenham’s fiercest rivals despite the fact the player was willing to make the move.

Friends and confidants of Adebayor are worried about his recent actions and claim he is not listening to advice or efforts to help, although he has consulted with Chelsea striker Didier Drogba about his problems. There is growing concern that Adebayor’s Facebook messages will put off any interested clubs.

In his first Facebook post, Adebayor accused younger brother Rotimi of taking 21 mobile phones from a French football academy. That was followed by a second message in which Adebayor claimed Rotimi stole a shirt given to him by the late Marc-Vivien Foe, a signed jersey that belonged to Real Madrid legend Zinedine Zidane and a £25,000 Cartier necklace.

In the third post, released this week, Adebayor said arguments with his brothers Kola and Peter, who died in July 2012, got so bad they drove him to consider taking his own life.

“Many times I wanted to give up,” wrote Adebayor. “Ask my sister Iyabo Adebayor how many times I have called and was ready to commit suicide.

“I kept these stories for years. But if I die, no one would know my story, no one would learn from it. Some people say I should keep these stories private, but someone has to sacrifice himself, someone has to talk about it.”

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