Emmanuel Adebayor saluted the role Tim Sherwood has played in his career after offering the Tottenham Hotspur boss a welcome pick-me-up against Sunderland.
At the end of a day dominated by speculation regarding the future of Spurs boss Sherwood, Adebayor helped to put a smile back on the face of the man at the White Hart Lane helm.
Sherwood looks set to be relieved of his managerial duties come the end of the season regardless of how he fares from this point on, with results such as Monday's 5-1 hammering of the rock-bottom Black Cats unable to rescue him.
Adebayor hopes such reports prove to be wide of the mark, having been welcomed back from the footballing wilderness by Sherwood, but the Togolese frontman appreciates that the players must focus on the pursuit of points and leave off-field matters to those in the boardroom.
He told Sky Sports: "I'm a player, he's picking me and I'm scoring goals, so I hope he stays.
"But I'm not the chairman, I'm not the owner of the club, so no matter what happens I will focus on my football and doing my job for the club.
"But he has been a big thing in my life. When everyone forgot about me, he gave me back my life. I'm very grateful and owe big thanks for that.
"I keep saying it. No matter what happens to the manager, I respect him as a manager and as a footballer.
"Today I'm very happy to be back on the pitch, scoring goals. There are still five games to go, let's focus on that and see what happens in the summer."
Adebayor netted twice against struggling Sunderland, taking his tally for the season to 13.
Christian Eriksen was also among the goals, in a man-of-the-match display, and the Danish midfielder was delighted to see the Spurs players prove that they can overcome distractions to shine on the big stage.
He said: "I think everybody wanted to show that we aren't affected by what the newspapers say or write. We are playing our game, like you saw today.
"It's easy for us to just focus on our thing. Whatever happens outside the club, or inside the club, of course we hear it and read it, but we try to be professional and just play football."