Crystal Palace striker Emmanuel Adebayor insists he is not a bad apple and claims his new club’s fans already love him.
The 31-year-old, who has played for the likes of Arsenal, Manchester City, Real Madrid and Tottenham, made his Palace debut in Tuesday’s 2-1 defeat at the hands of AFC Bournemouth – his first club appearance since May.
He feels he has attracted a negative reputation, but rejected the notion that he can cause trouble for his managers off the pitch.
“There is a bad reputation about Adebayor, but if you ask every single manager that I work under, maybe [only] one or two would say I am a bad apple in the dressing room,” the Togo international told Sky Sports.
“I am always smiling with everyone. It is a good squad with good players and I can guarantee that the squad in the dressing room is one of the best. It makes life easier for me.
“I do not have anything to prove. I just want to enjoy my football. I have been there and done it. The fans already love me, so I have to do my best. I always have a smile on my face.
“He [manager Alan Pardew] said I have to be a leader, which means I have to set an example, I have to come on time in training, do my job professionally and that is what I am doing.”
Adebayor was without a club from September after his release from Tottenham, but played down any worries over how ready he was to contribute in the Premier League.
“I have not played a full game since May, but I think I have played more than these guys in the Premier League,” he said.
“It is quite easy to organise a game in Africa. I just had to call some of my friends and tell them I was in the mood to play football. Then we would play a proper game with proper professionals.”