By Avenell Dave
Well it took a little longer than desired, but Arséne Wenger has made a tremendous decision to sell Emmanuel Adebayor which will benefit Arsenal next season.
When he first arrived, the Togo striker was a hard worker, capable of brilliance but principally overshadowed by Thierry Henry.
It was a time when Henry’s career at Arsenal was drawing to a close and, as captain, his exceptional talent was equalled by his arrogance. Cliques developed in the Arsenal dressing room.
Adebayor continued that trend, most notably when he clashed with Nick Bendtner in the Carling Cup a couple of years ago.
The young Dane may have a cocky streak himself, but he wants to be part of the team. Adebayor always wanted to be the King of the team.
Sadly, for a man who claimed at the weekend that he was “born to play football” he has got huge rewards in the shape of a hefty pay rise at Manchester City after his £25m move.
Those of us who have watched Ade over the last few years cannot deny that he has a great deal of talent – fast, not bad in the air, capable of the spectacular, he is an asset when on form and working as hard as the top players in the world tend to work.
But too often in the last couple of years, he has coasted through games, not willing to put in the basic level of effort required at the top level.
He has always needed more chances than a top, top striker, to score his goals; he drifts offside more often than he times his runs, never seeming to realise that he has the pace not to need to move as early; he thinks that deep belly laugh of his and a couple of fast-paced sentences fool all of the people all of the time...when the opposite is true.
What Arséne Wenger has done has got rid of one of the main players that Arsenal fans have come to despise. Along with Manu Eboue, Adebayor made Arsenal fans question their loyalty, question their love and question their confidence in their manager.
There are others, of course, whose talents us fans may question – Mikael Silvestre, Bendtner, Phil Senderos...hell...some even doubt Manuel Almunia and Theo Walcott.
But when it comes to wearing the shirt with pride, trying to play for the team rather than themselves and showing everyone that their performance comes from the heart, not from the wallet, Adebayor leaves a lot to be desired.
Arsenal fans WANT to cheer everyone who wears the Gunners shirt, but in the case of Adebayor, it has been hard to support someone who offends us with his indifferent approach. His presence has weakened the faith and patience we have in the team we love so dearly.
But Adabayor’s sale will be best felt in the dressing room, where the departure of his ego will cut the shackles from younger players who have been intimidated by his attitude.
Farewell Adebayor – you will not be missed.