Emmanuel Adebayor has begged the Football Association to take pity on his Manchester City team-mate Kolo Toure.
Although Adebayor is currently on loan at Real Madrid, he has remained in regular contact with Toure and been kept fully updated on the defender's failed drugs test. And the striker is adamant his fellow African would not have taken anything deliberately, a fact that needs to be taken into account when the FA are deliberating over what to do with the 29-year-old.
"I know Kolo Toure very well and I know he would never take any drug to help his ability on the football pitch," Adebayor told Sky Sports News Radio after Madrid's La Liga win over Hercules.
"I know him very well because he always comes to my house. It's more for losing weight. It's a little mistake.
"He will learn from his mistake. Hopefully the FA will manage to see that he's innocent and he will be back on the football pitch to play again."
Adebayor and Toure are both acutely aware that the possibility of a two-year suspension remains.
City boss Roberto Mancini last week admitted Toure was not in a good state mentally, although that did not prevent him being at Eastlands for the Premier League win over Wigan. And Adebayor confirmed his friend has perked up, even if he is not having an especially easy time at present.
"It's a tough moment for him," said Adebayor. "He can make a little mistake and it can be a very big story along your life.
"I keep him in my prayers because Kolo is more like a brother to me than a friend.
" He's a little bit down, which is normal. We are all human. But I wish him the best of luck."