Emmanuel Adebayor Doesn’t Have To Donate To Charity Just Like We Don’t Have To Pretend He’s A Nice Guy
Get the best email in soccer.
During a time of crisis, as this most certainly is, humans often show their best side.
Footballers like Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar have shelled out their own cash to help others, landlords in some of the hardest-hit cities have waived rent, neighbors have helped each other out and employers with strict work-from-the-office policies have let employees write soccer stories from home to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Someone in my apartment left notes all over our floor offering free groceries to anyone who is struggling right now, a lovely gesture that really shows how magnanimous humanity can be.
Then there’s the other side, the folks who don’t give any shits about anyone but themselves. You’ve got the rich folks who just hole up in their giant homes and sing at us that it’s all gonna be OK, the politicians who ignored warnings then blame others for their own shortcomings and the landlords who, like mine, offered a miniscule 10 percent discount off one month of rent during an unprecedented pandemic, as if that would make a meaningful difference for those most affected.
And of course, there’s Emmanuel Adebayor, the former Arsenal and Tottenham striker (and Monaco, Man City, Real Madrid, Crystal Palace, Istanbul Basaksehir and now Paraguayan side Olimpia).
Emmanuel Adebayor has always done whatever the hell he feels like on the pitch. Often times, it’s produced incredible results, as when he scored 30 goals for Arsenal in 2007-08. Often times, it’s infuriated fans, as when he scored against Arsenal for Manchester City and sprinted the entire length of the pitch to celebrate in front of Gooners.
Off the pitch, Adebayor is no different.
While many footballers have used the wealth they amassed playing the beautiful game to help others during the novel coronavirus pandemic, Adebayor has scoffed at the mere suggestion he donate to charity right now.
During a recent Facebook Live session, the Togolese striker left no mystery as to whether he might give some of his hard-earned cash to the less fortunate at a time when millions have been left unemployed.
“For those saying I do not donate, let me be very clear: I do not donate,” Adebayor said (translation via ESPN). “It is very simple.”
To be clear, no one should be required to donate to charity. Then it’s not a donation; it’s taxation. If Adebayor doesn’t want to help others, that’s his prerogative. And if we’re being honest, governments should be the ones providing assistance to those in need, not wealthier individuals. But we all know most of those who govern are just like Adebayor, only interested in how to help themselves, not others.
While donating to charity must always be a choice made of one’s own volition, it’s always jarring when you see someone who has had a long, well-paid career refuse to give back a single cent. Adebayor has been playing professionally since 2001 for some of the richest clubs in the world; he’s currently, at the age of 36, the highest-paid player in Paraguayan football history.
But Adebayor doesn’t give a fuck.
“I’m just living my life; I’m just enjoying myself,” he said. “At lot of people are coming on my page and asking why are you not doing a charity. For god’s sake. Why are you asking me to do a charity? I do what my heart asks me to do, not what you people ask me to do.
“I hate it. If I have 10,000 in my pocket and someone comes across my page and will say use that 10,000 to do something. Whatever you have in your pocket, use it as you wish. It’s as simple as that.”
You can’t blame Adebayor for growing frustrated at people telling him what to do with his money. He earned it; he can do with it as he so pleases. Would it be nice if he helped out his hometown of Lomé, Togo? Sure, but he’s fully within his rights to keep his money himself.
But that doesn’t mean we have to like the guy. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t spend all morning writing an article pointing out how selfish Adebayor is being, which definitely has nothing to do with the fact he tried to be a jerk to Arsenal fans more than 10 years ago.
We do, however, have a bit of sympathy for Adebayor. Apparently some in Togo believe the striker is what brought coronavirus to Lomé, the nation’s capital and largest city. We have no patience for such absurd conspiracy theories.
“It is like some people believe that I brought coronavirus to Lomé,” Adebayor said on the same Facebook Live stream. “It is very unfortunate, but that is how it is and that is how this country is.”
Y’all, don’t be the idiot who yells at Emmanuel Adebayor for bringing COVID-19 to Togo. Be the idiot who yells at Adebayor for not donating any money to charity, sneering at the mere idea of being compared to African legends Didier Drogba and Samuel Eto’o.
“I am compared with Drogba and Eto’o,” Adebayor said. “However, I am neither of them. I am Emmanuel Sheyi Adebayor and I will always do what I want.
“I do what I want, I eat what I want, and this is the most important thing.”