• Premier League

Adebayor rubbishes money dispute claim

ESPN staff
December 24, 2012
Emmanuel Adebayor insists money has nothing to do with his reluctance to play for Togo © PA Photos

Tottenham striker Emmanuel Adebayor says there is only a "5% chance" that he will play in the African Nations Cup because he remains in fear of his safety two years after the ambush of the Togo team bus by gunmen in Angola.

Togo football officials have claimed the Tottenham forward does not want to play because of a dispute over unpaid bonuses but Adebayor, 28, hit out at those comments and said he was likely to miss the tournament in South Africa because he was worried about a lack of security, organisation and preparation by the Togo FA.

Three people were killed in the Angola ambush, and the striker fears that the lessons of that day have not been learned.

"I do not need a bonus from Togo - it is £1,000 per game," Adebayor told the Sun. "I would not refuse to play for my country over money. It is all about the organisation, or lack of it.

"I was on the bus in Angola when people died in front of me. I held them as they died. Even the government do not want to pay for the treatment for the people who survived. It is not right.

"I had to leave a team bus wearing a bullet-proof vest and a bullet-proof helmet. People wanted me dead. I was told I was the target. I retired from international football but people asked me to come back and use my experience - so I agreed."

He said he had warned officials that they "had to sort things out" after qualifying for South Africa, but stressed that he believed "nothing has changed".

"South Africa is a good place, but you never know what will happen," he added. "We need to be organised, but Togo will not be. That is why I am not going. I am glad we qualified again, but I cannot risk everything."

He said Togo's organisational problems extended to him having to pay for players' flights and hotel rooms after booking errors.

"Sometimes there are only 10 rooms booked for the entire travelling squad," he explained. "There should be 20 rooms booked, not 10, so we have to pay the extra. The food is never any good, so I take the team out to another restaurant and pay for them to eat properly."

He claimed he had also helped to pay bonuses after victories, adding: "In 2010, when we qualified, I doubled the bonuses, which cost me almost £60,000.

The African Nations Cup takes place between January 19 and February 10.

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