Ex-Arsenal star, Emmanuel Adebayor reveals he came close to taking his own life at 16 due to the pressure of playing football

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Togolese footballer, Emmanuel Adebayor, who plays as a striker for Turkish club  has revealed how close he came to taking his own life at the age of 16.

The 35-year-old striker started his football journey in France after moving to Europe from Togo as a youngster in a bid to fulfill his dream of becoming a top footballer.

He went on to play for English clubs, first arriving with Arsenal in 2006 and then moving to Manchester City, Tottenham and Crystal Palace. He also played for Real Madrid in Spain.

While with Metz in France, Adebayor claimed that the pressure of trying to make it at the French club saw him consider suicide.

Speaking to the Daily Mail , he said: “I was 16. All I wanted to do was help my family out but they put huge pressure on me. I could not cope with it.

“When a family is poor, everyone is poor and there is huge solidarity. People will take a bullet for you. But when one makes it, it is like you owe everyone.

“I remember sitting on my bed one night and thinking ‘What am I doing here? Nobody’s happy with me, so what is the point of living?’

“There was a pharmacy below my apartment, I bought packet after packet of tablets.

“They did not want to sell it to me but I said it was for a charity in Togo. I made the preparations, I drank all the water. I was ready to go.

“Then I called my best friend at midnight. He told me not to rush, that I have things to live for.

“‘You have the potential to change Africa. I thought ‘You are a dream-seller and I am not buying any dreams right now.’

“But he took me out of the moment. I thought God must be keeping for something.”