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Adebayor ponders future after Togo Cup exit

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Togo’s forward Emmanuel Adebayor (L) heads the ball next to Ivory Coast’s defender Serge Aurier on January 16, 2017

PORT-GENTIL, Gabon, Jan 25 – Togo captain Emmanuel Adebayor will return home and ponder his options after his country exited the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday.

The 32-year-old former Arsenal, Manchester City, Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur forward has been without a club since leaving Crystal Palace at the end of last season.

Despite that he skippered his country at the Cup of Nations in Gabon, although he could not prevent them from being eliminated in the group stage.

Speaking after the 3-1 defeat to DR Congo in Port-Gentil that ended their hopes, Adebayor said: “I didn’t come here to search for a club. I came here to play and represent my country and I think I’ve done that quite well.

“Now we are out I am just going home and I’ll call my manager and see if there are some clubs that are interested in me. Let’s take it step by step and see how it goes.”

Adebayor has spent most of the past decade in England and while he said he had received offers from all around the world, he did hint that he could push for a move back to the Premier League.

“You know how much I love the Premier League even though I am not the most loved player in England. I have done it for the last 10 years in the Premier League,” he added, while also admitting that he will have to ponder his future with his country.

Togo will now start preparing for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers and coach Claude Le Roy must see if he can persuade Adebayor to keep playing.

“I don’t know yet. I don’t want to take any decision right now. It’s going to be a hard one to take. I’m going to sit down with the manager and see how I can be involved in the national team,” the player said.

Le Roy, who was taking charge of a sixth different country at a ninth Cup of Nations in a remarkable coaching career, said Adebayor had been “perfect” for him in Gabon.

“It’s unbelievable what he did during these eight days. Three games in a row at this level without any game for eight months,” said Le Roy, 68.

“We trained every morning with him for four and a half weeks in Lome before the tournament. At 7:30, 8am he was there with all my staff.

“I’m sure that if he is coming back in a club he will be great in the next few months because he showed to everybody that he was at the level.”

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