Emmanuel Adebayor has revealed how racial abuse from the Arsenal supporters caused his infamous goal celebration for Manchester City.
The Togolese striker left Arsenal in the summer of 2009 for rivals City under some rather controversial circumstances.
Then, in City’s fourth game of the 2008/09 Premier League campaign, Adebayor returned to haunt Arsenal by scoring the third goal in a 4-2 victory at the Etihad Stadium.
After finding the net, Adebayor ran the full length of the pitch and slid in front of the furious Arsenal supporters to celebrate his goal. Furthermore, he was accused of deliberately kicking Robin van Persie in the face.
The 35-year-old was slapped with a two-match ban and £25,000 fine for his actions afterwards.
But Adebayor has now revealed how the Arsenal fans’ chants over his parents were what provoked his celebration.
“All I heard was the chant ‘Your mother is a whore and your father washes elephants.’ My father worked in currency exchange and my mother is a businesswoman,” Adebayor told Daily Mail.
“But this went on and on. So how can I reply? I didn’t have a voice to go against thousands of supporters.
“If a sniper shot me, he would not have struck me down. I was in my spiritual zone.
“Kolo Toure said to me: ‘I was looking at the pictures and you did not flinch once.’ I did not feel human anymore. The abuse was too much. I was ready to die. I just looked at them and thought: ‘there are things you do not do’.
“It is why I have not said anything about racism the past few weeks. When I celebrated, the FA fined me, they punished me. Nothing happened to the Arsenal fans. So it [racism] started with me and long before me.”
Adebayor also spoke out his difficult relationship with Van Persie and Nicklas Bendtner at Arsenal.