Emmanuel Adebayor believes Manchester City will prove surprisingly strong opponents for Real Madrid in their Champions League semi-final.
City are in the last four of Europe’s premier club competition for the first time, while Madrid are looking to win the trophy for the 11th time in their history.
Adebayor joined the Spanish side on a six-month loan from City in 2011, and he feels the two teams are evenly matched.
Madrid travel to the Etihad Stadium for the first leg on Tuesday, and the Togo international backed the Premier League side to give a strong performance on home soil.
“It’s going to be a difficult tie for Madrid. I played for City and I know how hard it can be for opponents to play in their stadium,” Adebayor told AS.
“I can guarantee they [City] are not weak at all. When you have a player like [Sergio] Aguero, who scores a goal almost every time he plays, you cannot say they are weak.
“They have [Yaya] Toure, [David] Silva, [Kevin] De Bruyne is flying since returning from injury and [Samir] Nasri has also come back well.
“In Spain, they may think that Madrid will win, but I guarantee you it will be a difficult tie. I think it’s 50-50.”
Madrid do, however, boast the highest-scoring player in the Champions League this season in Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Portuguese’s 16 goals have been integral to their run to the last four although he missed Saturday’s game against Rayo Vallecano with a thigh problem.
Adebayor does not believe Ronaldo is replaceable if he misses out again in midweek.
“There is not a single player right now that can be as good as Cristiano,” he said.
“Perhaps in the future, but the player that can give more to Madrid than him has not yet been born. He has spent five years doing amazing things.”