Writing on Facebook yesterday, Adebayor recounted how his brothers once held a knife to his throat, as they demanded he give them money. At that time he was playing for Monaco.
He also reveals that he has contemplated suicide many times, and it is his sister who often convinces him not to kill himself.
Here’s the full transcript from Facebook.
SEA, if I decide to bring out the Part 3 today, it is because my brother @Kola Adebayor and my other siblings have decided to talk about our family issues on social medias, through letters to my club, radios…I could write an autobiography and sell it but I decided to share with you here.
25 years ago, my big older brother Kola went to Germany and he became the hope of our family. We all thought he could change the way we were living. Years after he left Togo, we still had no electricity and no phones. If he wanted to talk to us, he would call the Atlantic Hotel that was very close to our house. We would then run to the hotel reception and talk to him.
When I got the opportunity to go play football in France for the first time, we needed money to for the flight tickets and other expenses. My brother was nowhere to be found. Only God knows what he was doing in Germany.
When I arrived in France, I did all the paperwork with my team and they allowed me to stay in the academy. A few months later, my brother wanted to come visit me. I was running out of money and I was living at the academy. Therefore, I had to borrow money so I could pay for his hotel. At that time, my teammate Sega N’diaye from Cameroon was kind enough to lend me some money. I also had to borrow some more money because I had to give my brother some money for his trip back to Germany. Keep in mind he is my older brother.
A couple years later, things started to get better. Thank God, I signed a contract with Metz. Since then, my brother would contact me whenever it was time to pay his bills. Sometimes, he would say his son is sick… I had to get used to all this.
Again, I was lucky enough to get an offer from Monaco and I signed for the football club. One day, Kola and the late Peter Adebayor came to visit me in Monaco. My two brothers did not let me know they were coming. Someone said “blood is thicker than water” so I took them in. They arrived early in the morning and I was on my way to training. When I came back home, we had a discussion and they wanted to start a car business. Obviously, it involves a lot of money. I told them that I could help them out as soon as I get paid next. At that time, Thierry Mangwa was staying in my apartment because he was struggling with some personal issues and needed a place to stay. One day, I came back from training and he was crying. He never told me why. My brothers could also not explain. Another day, one of my friends Padjoe came to visit me and as he was leaving the house, I believe I offered him about €500. My brother Kola noticed that and was very upset. He was trying to understand why I gave my friend some money right away but not him. My reason was very simple; the money he (Kola) needed was a huge amount of money that I did not carry in my house. We went on and had an argument about it.
Another day, after training…I was very tired and decided to go take a nap. I woke up and a knife was held to my throat. As I opened my eyes, both of my brothers were there. They were shouting and they claimed that I was wasting their time. Peter was going mad and Kola was supporting. I asked them: “Is this the only way to solve this issue? I yes, then kill me and take the money”. It’s only at that moment that he put the knife down. After all this, I found a way out of my own apartment and I called my parents. My mom suggested that I call the police. That was the only way for me to get back into my house safely… I had training the next day, by the way. So I did what my mom said. Police came and they settled down. Again, “blood is thicker than water”, so I let it go. A few days after, Peter went to visit one of Kola’s friends in Paris. That means I was left in the house with Kola; for my own safety, I found a way to get him the money as soon as I could. Only God knows how much I gave him that day.
A few months after all this, I went back to Togo and I was surprised when my mom started to ask me why I called the police on my brothers, she continued and said I am the bad person in the family. That is another story I will leave for later…
Every time I went back home, everyone kept asking me why my brother never visited after all these years. Immediately, I organized a flight for him and he came back to visit the family, at my own expenses.
On April 22nd 2005, we received some bad news. I received a call and they announced that my father passed away. I was devastated. I called my big brother and told him that we all have to be there. Again I made sure there was a flight ticket ready for him. We all went back home and I took care of everything. A long time before my dad died, he was in the hospital one day and he asked me to make sure his funeral is not a moment of sadness. He wanted us to celebrate his life. I leave it to God to decide if the funeral I organized for my dad was what he wanted. The man who calls himself the “big man” in the family did not contribute to anything. But he still has the boldness to say I do not take care of this family.
In 2006, I had another big opportunity to go play for Arsenal. Since then, my brother has started to come up with series of false accusations against me.
On July 22nd, 2013 sad news hit us in the family. My brother Peter Adebayor passed away. His death was sad and I was affected by it. One thing I find difficult to swallow today is that Kola was accusing me of Peter’s death. He is saying that the shop I opened for Peter was not good enough. He kept texting saying that my career would be destroyed. I did everything for Peter when he was alive, I brought him to Metz, and Monaco with me. What can Kola say that he has done for Peter? Nothing. The man did not even show up at the funeral even after all the money I sent for the trip back home.
He is saying that I also made my mom suffer, but he forgot that when he was in Germany, at some point I was the one always by my mom’s side. As soon as I started to make a living with football, I did everything you could imagine for our mom. That is normal. But my brother is never satisfied. He said I bought a shitty car for my mom. Why can’t he buy a better one? All I want from him is to take his responsibilities. Since I am not doing it right, he should show the example as a big brother. He has been in Germany for more than 20 years, but he never brought our mother there to visit. Even to go back home for a visit is another struggle. All he keeps saying is that my father said I should build a house for each one of them. I don’t think my father said that. Does that even make sense for him or anyone? As a big brother, he is supposed to be doing all that I am doing for the family. He should stop hiding and take his responsibilities. When he came to Europe, he was young enough to become a football player too. Anyways, some people are drivers here but they are able to take care of their families. They even bring their parents and other family members. Why has he not done anything like that but he keeps talking? As a matter fact, he should at least bring Rotimi, Bidemi or his own son Aziz here before talking about “taking care of the family”. Actions are louder than speeches.
A lot of people are saying that I never went to school, but they forget that it is because we could not afford it. I never blamed my parents for that. But thank God, today I am able to speak more than 3 languages and I can send my daughter to school. I am proud of that. People can accuse me for not going to school, but in the end it is all about who you become and what you teach yourself. It is also about what life teaches you and what you learn from it.
Many times I wanted to give up. Ask my sister Iyabo Adebayor how many times I have called and was ready to commit suicide? I kept these stories for years… But If I die, no one would know my story, no one would learn from it… Some people say I should keep these stories private, but someone has to sacrifice himself; someone has to talk about it. I know people would relate to my story and others would learn from it. For every one who knows me, I’d do anything for my country and my people.
Final message from the younger brother to the older brother: Quit Smoking and Quit Drinking. That was my story.