Emmanuel Adebayor is just one of those players. You never know which one will turn up. Sometimes he could be considered one of the league's best strikers, others it's questionable that he's even a professional footballer. 

There is no denying that Adebayor is a fantastically gifted player. In his first season for Spurs, he scored 18 goals and assisted 12, helping them to their second fourth-place finish in three years and cementing his place in the hearts of the White Hart Lane faithful.

This is made even more impressive by the fact he was an enemy of Tottenham for many years as he had continued success for arch-rivals Arsenal.

This was hardly an anomaly, having scored at least double figures for the previous six seasons for multiple teams, including a 29 goal haul for Arsenal in the 2007/08 season. That year he even won 'Goal of the Season', coincidentally, for his volley against Spurs.

He has always been complemented for his immense combination of strength and pace, and his uncommon ability to beat defenders in the air and with the ball at his feet. But these positives have often been shrouded by negatives.

Adebayor has often been accused of 'playing for a contract'. This is where his performances have dipped significantly as soon as he has signed a contract that guarantees a long-term and enormously high wage.

After his crowning Premier League season for Arsenal, where he scored 29 goals, he was handed a long-term contract on double the wages he was currently on. His goal tally then halved in a season troubled by injury. With rumours of a transfer rife, his performances picked up late on in the season, including a brilliant bicycle kick against Villarreal in the Champions League quarter-finals.

He was gifted a big money transfer to Manchester City and handed another big wage increase. He scored in his first four games for Man City, including his infamous goal and celebration against Arsenal where he ran the entire length of the pitch to celebrate in front of the Arsenal fans.

Once again, his performances slipped without the motivation of a new contract, and Adebayor wasn't settled and back to his best until he signed a one-year loan deal with Tottenham.

With a new club, and a set of fans that would take a lot to impress, Adebayor put in some exhilarating performances in one of his best seasons yet. His 18 goals were made even more impressive by his 12 assists, with the highlight perhaps being a 5-0 win over Newcastle, where Adebayor scored or assisted all five goals.

His selfless and skilful hold up play won him a permanent contract with Spurs. With that, almost inevitably, his performances once again plummeted. 

By early April, with just three league goals to his name, many were wondering why Andre Villas-Boas was even putting him in the squad, let alone in the first team.

But suddenly, in Spurs' most important encounter of the season so far, away at Stamford Bridge, the old beast came out of its shell. Adebayor put in one of the great centre-forward performances, scoring an incredible 30-yard finish into the top corner, and bossing around the world-class back four of Branislav Ivanovic, David Luiz, Gary Cahill and Ashley Cole with unequivocal ease.

It was the Adebayor that had earned him many big-money transfers in the past, and one that Tottenham had missed all season. He followed this up with two more stellar performances in Tottenham's notoriously common, heartbreakingly close failure to reach the Champions League.  

Spurs fans will wonder what could have been if Adebayor had played that way for the entire season. Even more so, they will wonder which Emmanuel Adebayor will turn up next year. Unfortunately, it looks as if Villas-Boas isn't prepared to take that risk with rumours of him pushing the big Togo frontman out of the door. 

It may be a shrewd move by Villas-Boas, as Adebayor's end of season performances will have pushed his transfer fee right up. There is no guarantee which Adebayor will turn up come August 17, but if it's the one they saw tearing Chelsea up at Stamford Bridge, the Spurs faithful will hope he'll be doing it at White Hart Lane.  

 

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Topics:
#Premier League
#Tottenham Hotspur
#Emmanuel Adebayor
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