Former Arsenal striker Emmanuel Adebayor opens up about considering suicide and surviving Togo terrorist attack
Former Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur striker Emmanuel Adebayor has openly discussed contemplating suicide.
At the age of 16, the former Togo international moved to Ligue 1 side Metz in an attempt to make it in Europe.
However, after struggling to support his family at home, Adebayor admitted to feeling like a failure and tried to take his own life.
“I was 16,’ he exclusively told the Daily Mail. “All I wanted to do was help my family out but they put huge pressure on me. I could not cope with it. When a family is poor, everyone is poor and there is huge solidarity. People will take a bullet for you. But when one makes it, it is like you owe everyone.
“At Metz I was on maybe £3,000 a month. My family asked for a house worth £500,000. The club were tired of me because of my behaviour. I remember sitting on my bed one night and just thinking ‘What am I doing here? Nobody’s happy with me, so what is the point of living?’
“There was a pharmacy below my apartment. I bought packet after packet of tablets. They did not want to sell it to me but I said it was for a charity in Togo. I made the preparations, I drank all the water. I was ready to go. Then I called my best friend at midnight.
“He told me not to rush, that I have things to live for. ‘You have the potential to change Africa.’ I thought “You are a dream-seller and I am not buying any dreams right now.’ But he took me out of the moment. I thought God must be keeping for something.”
Now playing for Istanbul Basaksehir, the 35-year-old has endured more than his fair share of hardships in life. Although his career has taken him from Monaco, London, Madrid and now to Istanbul, Adebayor has had to roll with plenty of devastating punches thrown at him by life.
After his father died, Adebayor admitted to becoming the ‘captain’ of his own family. In 2007, as captain of the Togo national team, reports claimed he was threatening to pull out of an African Cup of Nations qualifier against Sierra Leone because of a row over bonus payments.
Adebayor received death threats, but then scored twice in the game, only to be suspended by the Togo federation along with two of his team-mates.
And then, in 2010, the Togo captain was forced to carry his creaming teammates into hospital when the national team bus was ambushed by terrorists travelling through Angola.
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Of the attack, the former Crystal Palace striker said: “For 42 minutes, all we heard were gunshots. Left, right, front and back. I just heard friends shouting but we could not move or do anything.
“As captain, I told everyone to call their families. I called my girlfriend and I told her ‘Listen, I am about to go.’
“She said ‘Go where?’ She was pregnant. I said ‘If the child is born, if it is a boy, name him Emmanuel Jr. If it is a girl, name her Princess Emannuela. She said ‘What are you talking about?’ And then I just had to say ‘I will call you later if I am still alive.”
Source: Prem News