With so much discussion around new signing Emmanuel Adebayor, we've rounded up the most talked about points, giving Alan Pardew's answers to everything from the player's attitude, to his fitness, and fitting in...
Is he a risky signing?
“I see in him a desire to get his career back on track and I think I can help him so I’m hoping that’s a win win situation for him and us. You can not underestimate the quality he has, I’ve tried to sign him twice before, once when I was at West Ham and once at Newcastle, so he’s a player that’s been on my radar for a while and I’m very pleased to have him. I think he’s a character that needs to be loved and with the group I have, the staff, players, and fans, he’s going to get that. The only uncertainty around Ade is the fact that he hasn’t played for a period, but our initial look at him has been good so we’re buoyed by that, he looks good in training, he’s fit and well, he’s focused on doing well for Crystal Palace, and we’ve incentivised his contract being a success here.”
What does his contract stipulate?
“It is a deal around playing and being successful for us. There was no discussion about it, Ade accepted it and he’s very focused on integrating with the guys quickly and getting up to speed. That is an issue that is going to be difficult for me now in terms of how do I integrate him. Is it going to be a few cameo roles or put him straight in - you’re going to have to wait and see on that."
How long will it take him to get fit?
“Training replicates matches and our tempo has always been hard with me, my doctor keeps telling me I’m too hard on the players but that’s good in my opinion. You can’t actually replicate a Premier League game in training and that’s going to be the challenge to get the best out of Ade in the period we’ve got him.”
What does he still have to prove?
“I can only see what’s in front of me and I see a guy who wants to be a success, and who wants to be the top goal scoring African player in the Premier League. We all felt a bit sorry for ourselves with Yannick Bolasie out and Connor Wickham now suspended, but you can see in the training ground he’s done his first part already because he’s given everyone a boost and a lift.”
Is he a risk?
“I can’t talk about Ade’s history because I don’t know all the facts. The only risk is if he doesn’t play well, but I don’t see any other risk. I know from Tim Sherwood (someone I know well) certain things about how Adebayor work so I’m going to try and help create an atmosphere here that gives him the best possible chance of success. He didn’t need to come here, he’s putting himself up and that fills me with confidence. We’re very fortunate to have Ade, our fans should be very optimistic as I am, and let’s see where the ride takes us. If I can get him anywhere near his best it’ll be more than good enough for us.”
Is the club still looking to sign more players?
“My chairman has always been very active in the windows and I’m not feeding that in anyway, I don’t need to, he’s quite bullish about doing deals. I’m just looking for the right balance in my squad. There’s one or two things I’m looking for but we’ll have to wait and see.”