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Life President
May 29, 2005
Socrates. Paolo di Canio. Eric Cantona. Emannuel Adebayor. All undeniably great players that have suffered from the madness that often comes with the territory of genius.

A game that celebrated some fantastic, flowing football will undoubtedly be remembered for two incidents surrounding the Togolese forward who exchanged North London for the Manchester Millions this summer. In the lead up to the game, Adebayor had stated he'll remain unfazed by any hate that spills out of the terraces while Arsene Wenger pleaded for calm: in his opinion, the business between him and the player was over. Arsene will probably be rethinking that particular opinion this evening.

The first incident involved Adebayor's former team mate Robin Van Persie. The two collided during a tussle for the ball in the centre of the park, a strange enough feat anyway considering they're both centre forwards. The Dutch international fell to the floor, Adebayor stepping over him, and then clutched his face writhing in agony. Replays showed Adebayor had purposefully and forcefully stamped on his head, cutting his temple in the process. Over the years there have been some horrendous challenges that have dirtied the Premier League, but there certainly hasn't been such heinous act in recent memory and Adebayor will most definitely feel the wrath of the Football Association in the coming days.

Wenger, predictably, didn't see the particular incident but Van Persie was left outraged. Speaking to the Arsenal Official Website in the wake of the 4-2 loss, Van Persie was "sad and disappointed by Adebayor's mindless and malicious stamp." Adebayor hid behind the excuse that it was an accidental action that was a result of Van Persie's tackle, but that won't wash with the arbitrary panel, although the musical "Stomp!" have declared an interest in bringing him into their team.

In the midst of the madness, Adebayor was in scintillating form. One particular run saw him take on four of Arsenal's defenders, each one failing in their attempts to bring him down, before nutmegging Gallas and slotting a wonderful pass to the feet of the approaching Shaun Wright-Phillips, who couldn't direct it goal bound.

With Manchester City growing into ascendancy and, knowing the all-encompassing sod's law of football that former players always score on their return, it was only a matter of time before Adebayor found himself on the score sheet. Nodding home a Shaun Wright-Phillips cross, the man in question proceeded to sprint the length of the pitch, completely ignoring his own team mates and fan, only to miraculously find himself in front of the travelling supporters.

Diving into a sea of oncoming missiles, he was the picture of smugness as the outraged Arsenal fans continued in their attempts to breach the pitch and get to their former star. Quite what they'd do to him, I'm not sure... Perhaps a slap on the back and a "naughty boy", but at a time when Daily Mail readers are still outraged by the events at Upton Park a fortnight ago, the last thing the game needs are incidents like these. In his defence, Adebayor apologised immediately after the match, but it'll be too little too late in a game where moments of genius and a fantastic result were marred by moments of lunacy.

Wenger pleaded for calm before the match, I doubt very much the same words will reverberate the stands of The Emirates on Adebayors return.
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