Emmanuel Adebayor came up with an impressive performance in Istanbul Basaksehir’s game versus their rival Galatasaray in Turkey’s Super Lig, as he finished the game with a hat trick. Adebayor scored two goals in the first half, with his third coming in minute 57. Mustafa Pektemek scored a goal of his own after being substituted in for Adebayor late in the game. That final goal resulted in a resounding 4-0 final score in favor of Istanbul. Istanbul is now five points behind the league leader, Besiktas, with seven games left in the season.
Adebayor is most famous for his tenures with Arsenal and Tottenham in the Premier League. His last hat trick was during his 2011 season with Real Madrid. In his prime, he was also a star for the Togo national team, and is the country’s leading scorer in international play. He has been with Istanbul since signing as a free agent in January. That signing marked the end of seven months of Adebayor searching for a home after being released by Crystal Palace last summer. Adebayor only scored once in his six-month Crystal Palace stint and failed to carry Togo out of the 2016 Africa Cup of Nations, which stands in stark contrast to the 33-year-old’s hot start in Super Lig, in which he’s scored five goals in four starts for Istanbul this year.
Following the game, Adebayor dedicated the hat trick to some of his former teammates. “I owe it to the great players I played with like Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry, Patrick Vieira and [Cristiano] Ronaldo. This is for them and what I learned from them.” He also commented on his first goal of the game, calling it one of the easiest he’s ever scored. That goal went into a practically empty net following an error on the part of Galatasaray’s goalie.