Belfast Telegraph

Wenger urges Adebayor respect

Arsene Wenger has urged Arsenal fans to show respect towards former striker Emmanuel Adebayor in Sunday's north London derby - and was never in doubt the Togo forward would be a "big player" wherever he went.

Adebayor was plucked from obscurity at Monaco by Wenger in 2006, but has endured a poor relationship with the Gunners since leaving to join Manchester City and latterly Spurs on loan. He was the target of abuse during the first meeting between the sides at White Hart Lane in October.

Both clubs have issued a joint statement warning supporters against anti-social behaviour during the clash, and Wenger added: "We want to respect everybody. Respect Tottenham players on Sunday and we want our players and supporters to be respected as well."

The Arsenal manager continued: "I bought Adebayor when nobody knew him in this country and he became a big player here so I am not surprised that he is doing well.

"He went to Manchester City, then to Real Madrid, then back to Manchester City and then to Tottenham, so he has only made big clubs and I am not surprised because he is a good player."

The Gunners head into the game trailing their arch rivals by 10 points, and have not finished below Spurs in almost 20 years.

Wenger insists bragging rights are not on his agenda.

"It is the most important game because it is the next one. That is what top-level sport is like," he said.

"For us it is important, but because we have an opportunity to come back closer to Spurs and strengthen our position in fourth place."


From Belfast Telegraph