Mark Hughes has asked that Emmanuel Adebayor be ‘cut some slack’ after his goal celebration against Arsenal.
The Blues striker had been subjected to plenty of verbal abuse from his former followers at Arsenal before his second half strike led to a sprint down the length of the pitch and a slide in front of City fans close to where the away contingent were housed.
Adebayor, who now has four goals in four games for City, was booked for his celebration and immediately made a public apology for any trouble he caused.
Hughes later backed his summer signing who has become a big hit with Blues.
“We have to Cut Emmanuel a bit of slack,” said the manager. “He is an emotional guy and was caught up in the moment. It was a fantastic goal and great finish. He has already apologised on camera and that is the right thing to do because obviously it can be provocative.
“We just have to understand that he is an emotional guy and he wanted to share the moment with the fans in the corner with whom he has a special affinity. It is the same area that the Arsenal fans were in so there is the potential for people to see it as the wrong thing to do. We recognise that and so does Ade.”
City ended the night in third place with a perfect twelve points from twelve and have a game in hand on their nearest rivals. The manager, though, is not getting carried away.
“We will only know how significant this result is at the end of the season,” declared the cautious City chief. “But it has done us no harm whatsoever. There were a lot of eyes and focus on us and we put down another marker. It was a test and a challenge for everyone and we have come through and there will be more of those as the season progresses.
We will enjoy today. It was a high quality game with some fantastic football produced by both sides. We are delighted to have come out on top against a very good Arsenal side
“It was a big test against a side used to playing with high expectations and that is used to winning. I sensed as the guys arrived at lunchtime that there was a real sense of anticipation. It was about getting the job done and that it what we did. Both sides contributed to a high quality match.
“We showed great qualities especially after we conceded that first goal of the season. And remember we were without Robinho and Carlos Tevez. People also forget that we still have Roque Santa Cruz, Vincent Kompany and Michael Johnson to come back.”
Robinho, though, will not be back for three weeks or so after being diagnosed with a stress fracture in his ankle.