MANCHESTER, September 11 – Emmanuel Adebayor comes under the spotlight in the Premier League this weekend as he prepares to face former club Arsenal.The Manchester City forward completed a move away from the Emirates during the summer, and will surely be eager to show that his switch was not driven by money.
Togo international Adebayor moved to Eastlands for around 25 million pounds and is believed to be earning in the region of 150,000 pounds-a-week at the club.
As he comes face-to-face with Arsene Wenger, the Arsenal manager who coached him for three years, Adebayor admits he is keen to prove himself to his new supporters.
"It was a strange feeling because I was on holiday and when I got back Arsenal said Manchester City were interested," said Adebayor. "I am happy here and am at a place where people believe in what you can do.
"The most important thing to me is to show I can do something good in my career, and that motivation will always be there for me.
"In English football you have to fight to win the battle, and all I can do on the pitch is try my best and keep working for the team. I believe in my ability."
Wenger insists he does not hold any grudge against Adebayor, who has made a fantastic start at Man City with three goals from three league appearances so far.
Critics of the African striker believed he would take time to settle with Mark Hughes’s side, but as that has not been the case Arsenal are going to be on their guard this weekend.
Hughes’s aim is to break into the Premier League’s top four clubs, which could come at the expense of Arsenal.
And to make life more difficult for Wenger and his troops, on Saturday they will be trying to break down a defence led by rejuventated Ivory Coast international Kolo Toure.
He also departed Arsenal to join Manchester City, and has just been made captain at Eastlands on a permanent basis following Richard Dunne’s switch to Aston Villa.
Hughes is confident the defender will not let him down.
"He has great enthusiasm for the game, he’s vocal in the dressing room before, during and after games and he wants to drive the club forward," Hughes said.
A tricky fixture for Arsenal’s Wenger has not been helped by an injury setback for Andrey Arshavin.
The Russian international will be out of action for the next week, after aggravating a groin problem, and will miss this game along with the Champions League encounter against Standard Liege next week.
Wenger will be buoyed by the return of Cesc Fabregas in midfield though, and admits he is not sure what to expect from the Eastlands outfit as he takes his side north.
"It’s difficult to assess Man City," he said. "The best way to do that is to play against them, when you have a much more objective impression."
On the opposite side of the fence Croatian forward Eduardo will be under the microscope for different reasons.
Eduardo was recently handed a two-match European suspension for diving, and was booed when playing against England at Wembley this week.
Wenger, however, has faith that the player will react well to any animosity he may face on this away trip.
"Any situation you face as a top level player you have to deal with," he explained. "You have to be mentally strong. The situation has been created by the media impact of his case. I don’t think it will affect him.
"He’s been through a lot more difficult things than that. The good way to deal with that is that he is in good health. It’s a minor event considering what he’s gone through before."
Manchester City will be without Carlos Tevez, who suffered a knee injury playing for Argentina, while Robinho is trying to overcome a knock and must face a fitness test.