Ghanaian International Jordan Ayew has revealed why he stayed in the Premier League.
The attacker says he was determined to prove his worth after failing to impress in his first season in England.
He joined Aston Villa from French Ligue 1 side, Lorient.
‘I never gave up,’ he says. ‘People around me were saying, ‘Go back to France’, but I wanted to prove myself,” he told the Daily Mail.
Roy Hodgson is certainly glad Ayew made that call. The striker is one of Palace’s main men and he is crucial in taking at least some of the attacking burden from Wilfried Zaha. But if the going gets tough, Ayew knows he has the support network to come through, whatever befalls him.
‘My mother has done a good job because she has kept me and my brothers very close,’ says Ayew.
‘She told us that if we have a problem with each other, we should solve it in the next five minutes. Those are the little things that have made us very close.
‘As a family we are all over the place — I’m in London, Andre is in Wales, my brother is in Gibraltar, but we always speak to each other.’
And then, of course, there is Ayew’s illustrious father on hand to dispense his own pearls of wisdom.
‘I try to speak to him as much as I can, maybe nine times a week,’ says Ayew.
‘But dad can be very hard. Sometimes things were easy for him and he thinks they should be easy for me.
‘He is very critical of us but in a good way. He’s a perfectionist and tries to make sure we are at it every day.
‘But he supports all our teams. So dad is a Crystal Palace supporter now.’