HAPPY ALBERT ENJOYS LAST LAUGH
Adomah moves on at last
WAYNE Rooney and Luis Suarez could learn a thing or two from Middlesbrough’s new winger Albert Adomah.
Relegated to League One with Bristol City last season, the skilful 25-year-was desperate to leave and even slapped in a transfer request.
But unlike the Premier League prima donnas, he didn’t agitate for a move or kick up a stink in the Press – even after big-spending Wigan had two bids rejected.
Instead, he kept his head down, kept training and this week saw his patience rewarded with a £1m switch to promotion hopefuls Middlesbrough.
“It’s been a long summer,” laughs the likeable Londoner, who played over 150 games for City and was named player of the year in 2010-11.
“One minute I was supposed to go to Wigan. The next minute, the deal was off. Then it was back on. There was speculation every week; this team was supposed to coming in, rumours left, right and centre.
“I was training with Bristol all along, although I wasn’t allowed to play games or go on tour in case I had to move.
“So when they left, I just had to sit and wait for them to come back before I could train again. It was frustrating but you have to conduct yourself properly.
“I could have refused to train and said ‘I won’t kick a ball until you sell me’. But that wouldn’t have helped anyone. I never understand why players do that because you end up unfit when you move.
“Also, the supporters appreciated me a lot at Bristol City, so I wanted to behave properly when I left.
“Normally, supporters see a transfer request and say ‘He doesn’t care, he’s got a bad attitude’. But they knew why I did it.
“One reason was to show other clubs that I was available and willing to move. The other was international football.
“No disrespect to League One, but not many national coaches will watch it. Even if I was playing well, a player in a higher division is more likely to be selected. I only just got into the picture with Ghana and I couldn’t risk that.
“I was honest about that and if you ask the fans at Bristol I’m sure they’d say it was the right thing for me to move.”
Indeed they have – City’s online messageboards are full of glowing tributes and good tidings for the man who Boro fans are hoping will change their fortunes.
Relegated from the Premier League in 2009, the Teesiders haven’t even made the play-offs under first Gordon Strachan and now Tony Mowbray, with crowds suffering badly as a result.
But Adomah, who started out at Non-League Harrow Borough while training to be a decorator, says the club is ready for a return to the top flight.
“It’s a massive club,” he said. “I went round the training complex and it was Premier League standard, absolutely immense.
“With the players there and facilities like that, promotion has to be the next step. I’m in no doubt we can reach the play-offs, but I think the aim for everybody should be automatic.
“People talk about the crowds but once we’re doing well, people will follow us. It’s the same everywhere.”
And while Teeside is a long way from Lambeth, where Adomah was born, the Ghana international isn’t worried about feeling homesick.
“It’s a long way, but so was Bristol,” he says. “I’d never played outside of London and it was a new city, new people.
“Now I’m four hours from home but it’s no big deal. As a footballer, you have to be prepared to move wherever the opportunities are.
“You could love living in London but what if Bayern Munich wanted to buy you? Would you say ‘No, sorry, it’s too far away’? No way. You have to be professional and I’m sure I’ll love it here.”
PATIENCE PAYS OFF: Albert Adomah in action for Bristol City last season