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Samuel Eto'o

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Samuel Eto'o biography

Samuel Eto'o Fils (born 10 March 1981) is a Cameroonian Association football who plays as a Forward (association football) for Russian team FC Anzhi Makhachkala. Samuel Eto'o is also the current Captain (association football) of the Cameroon national football team.
Eto'o trained at Kadji Sports Academy. Samuel Eto'o also holds a Spain passport, enabling Samuel Eto'o not to count among the "foreign players" working in the European Union.

Eto'o scored over 100 goals in five seasons with FC Barcelona, and is also the record holder in number of appearances by an African player in La Liga. In 2010, Samuel Eto'o became the first player to win two European The treble Continental trebles following Samuel Eto'o back-to-back achievements with Barcelona and Internazionale. Samuel Eto'o is the second player to have ever scored in two separate UEFA Champions League finals and the fourth player, after Marcel Desailly, Paulo Sousa, and Gerard Piqué, to have won the UEFA Champions League two years in a row with different teams. Samuel Eto'o is the most decorated African player of all time having won the African Player of the Year award a record four times in 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2010.

As a member of the Cameroon national football team, Samuel Eto'o was a part of the squad that won the Football at the 2000 Summer Olympics; Samuel Eto'o has participated in three FIFA World Cup and six Africa Cup of Nations (being champion twice) and is the all-time leading scorer in the history of the African Nations Cup, with 18 goals.

Club career

Real Madrid

Samuel Eto'o joined Real Madrid C.F. in 1997, but Samuel Eto'o could only train with Real Madrid Castilla, as Samuel Eto'o was still a minor. Real Madrid B were relegated to the third tier, Segunda División B, where non-European Union players are not allowed, and as a result, Samuel Eto'o was loaned to second-division CD Leganés for the 1997–98 season, when Samuel Eto'o was only in the tenth grade. After making 30 appearances for the club and only scoring four goals, Samuel Eto'o returned to Madrid following the end of the 1998–99 season. In January 1999, Samuel Eto'o was loaned out to RCD Espanyol, but failed to make any appearances for the club.


The next season, in the winter transfer window, Samuel Eto'o transferred to La Liga team RCD Mallorca on loan, scoring six goals in 19 games. At the end of the season, Eto'o left Real Madrid, signing a permanent deal with RCD Mallorca for a club record £4.4 million fee. In Samuel Eto'o second season, Samuel Eto'o scored 11 goals and began to garner attention throughout the league. Mallorca President Mateo Alemany said of Samuel Eto'o style of play, "I doubt if there is any other player in the world who would please the fans more at this moment." Eto'o himself commented on Samuel Eto'o rise to stardom, "I like it here in Mallorca; I have always been well looked after, the fans appreciate me and I also have a contract that runs until 2007." Samuel Eto'o returned the fans' appreciation when Samuel Eto'o donated €30,000 in meals to travelling Mallorca supporters who made the journey to the Copa del Rey final against Recreativo de Huelva in 2003. Mallorca won the match 3–0, with Eto'o scoring two late goals to seal the victory. Samuel Eto'o volatile attitude, however, resulted in several off-pitch incidents. Bartolome Terrassa, a television journalist, filed a formal complaint after a run-in with Eto'o in the club's parking lot, accusing the player of saying, "The next time, you are not going to escape; I'm going to kill you." This was not the first incident, however, as the previous year, Eto'o's former agent, Daniel Argibeaut, accused the player of assaulting Samuel Eto'o with four accomplices, saying, "They then took off my shoes, which in Cameroon means I am threatened with death."



Eto'o departed Mallorca as the club's all-time leading domestic league scorer (54 goals) when Samuel Eto'o signed for FC Barcelona in the summer of 2004 for a transfer fee of €24 million, after lengthy, three-way negotiations with Mallorca and Madrid. Initially, Real Madrid President Florentino Pérez wanted to buy back the full transfer rights and loan Samuel Eto'o out again, but eventually the Barcelona deal proved lucrative enough to warrant a sale. Additionally, the team already had its full quota of three non-EU players. Samuel Eto'o signed an improved contract with Barcelona in June 2005.

After missing out on the previous year's Pichichi Trophy trophy, which is given to the topscorer in La Liga, Eto'o edged out Valencia CF striker David Villa for the award during the final matchday on 20 May 2006 when Samuel Eto'o scored Samuel Eto'o 26th goal of the season against Athletic Bilbao. Eto'o was very gracious to teammates after the game saying, "It has been a team effort although only one person gets the award. We've worked hard all season and have got our just rewards."

Eto'o also contributed six goals during Barcelona's run to the UEFA Champions League 2005-06 title. In 2006 UEFA Champions League Final, Arsenal F.C. goalkeeper Jens Lehmann was sent off early on for bringing down Eto'o just outside of the penalty area, but the Catalans struggled to capitalize on their one-man advantage until Eto'o scored the game-tying goal in the second half. Barcelona went on to win the match 2–1, and Eto'o was awarded with the UEFA Best Forward of the Year award for Samuel Eto'o accomplishments in the European campaign.

Eto'o also won an historic third consecutive African Player of the Year award that season. Samuel Eto'o said in Samuel Eto'o acceptance speech, "Above all, I dedicate this to all the children of Africa." Samuel Eto'o was also selected to Samuel Eto'o second straight FIFPro World XI and finished third in the running for the FIFA World Player of the Year, making Samuel Eto'o only the second African footballer ever to be voted into the top three.

The season started badly for Eto'o, as Samuel Eto'o ruptured the Meniscus (anatomy) in Samuel Eto'o right knee during Barcelona's Champions League group stage match against SV Werder Bremen on 27 September 2006. Barcelona team physician Ricard Pruna originally estimated that the injury would keep Samuel Eto'o out of action for two to three months. After the operation, Eto'o's recovery time was extended to five months, but Samuel Eto'o resumed training with Barcelona in early January 2007.


Eto'o refused to come on as a substitute in a league match against Racing de Santander on 11 February 2007. Barcelona manager Frank Rijkaard said after the match, "Samuel Eto'o did not want to come on; I don't know why." Ronaldinho was critical of Eto'o's actions, saying that Eto'o was not putting the team first, but Eto'o rebutted the comment, claiming that Samuel Eto'o did not come on because Samuel Eto'o did not have enough time to warm up properly. Three months later, Eto'o said, "These kind of things are usually just speculation and don't come through to me. However, if it is true that I am a problem for my team then I will go. But like I said, I am happy here. The press can write what they want." Following the comments, Barcelona President Joan Laporta was quick to quash rumours of transfers involving Eto'o and Ronaldinho.

After aggravating a meniscus injury on 28 August during a summer friendly against F.C. Internazionale Milano, Eto'o was sidelined indefinitely. On 17 October, in the midst of Samuel Eto'o recovery period, Samuel Eto'o gained Spanish citizenship. Samuel Eto'o was cleared to play again on 4 December, and returned to the side a week later in Barcelona's 2–1 league win over Deportivo de La Coruña.

Eto'o recorded Samuel Eto'o first league hat-trick in a match against UD Levante on 24 February 2008. Samuel Eto'o finished with a total of 16 league goals in 18 appearances for the season. On 25 October, Samuel Eto'o recorded the fastest hat-trick in club history after netting three times in 23 minutes in a victory over UD Almería. Only two games later, on 8 November 2008, Eto'o scored four goals in the first half of Barcelona's game against Real Valladolid, which ended 6–0.

On 29 November 2008, Samuel Eto'o scored Samuel Eto'o 111th career Barcelona goal in all competitions in a 3–0 road win over Sevilla FC, moving Samuel Eto'o into the club's top ten all-time goalscorers.

On 14 February 2009, Samuel Eto'o scored Samuel Eto'o 99th and Samuel Eto'o 100th league goals for Barcelona in a 2–2 draw with Real Betis. Eto'o scored Samuel Eto'o 30th goal of the 2008–09 season in a La Liga match against Real Valladolid. The game ended 1–0 and meant that Barcelona kept a six point lead over Real Madrid C.F. in the league. Samuel Eto'o also scored against Villarreal CF in the game that put Barcelona one point away from lifting the 2008–09 La Liga trophy.

Eto'o scored the opening goal in the 2009 UEFA Champions League Final against Manchester United F.C.. Barcelona went on to win the final 2–0, thus completing the Treble (association football).


After Maxwell Cabelino Andrade completed the transfer from F.C. Internazionale Milano, Joan Laporta confirmed that there was an agreement in principle between Barcelona and Internazionale for Zlatan Ibrahimović to join the club in exchange for Eto'o and €46 million. After Ibrahimović agreed terms with Barcelona, the club announced Eto'o would travel to Milan for Samuel Eto'o medical to complete the transfer.

On 27 July 2009, Eto'o passed Samuel Eto'o medical and signed for five years with Inter. On Samuel Eto'o first press-conference in Milan, Samuel Eto'o declared that Samuel Eto'o was where Samuel Eto'o wanted to be and refused to compare himself to Ibrahimović saying, "I'm Samuel Eto'o and I don't want to compare myself to anyone. I believe the victories I have earned up to now can contribute to giving the right value to my name." On 8 August, Eto'o scored Samuel Eto'o first competitive goal for Inter, in the 2009 Supercoppa Italiana. Two weeks later, Eto'o scored penalty kick against A.S. Bari in Samuel Eto'o first Serie A match. In the following match, the Milan Derby, Eto'o won Inter a penalty, after being brought down by Gennaro Gattuso in the box. Gattuso was yellow carded and eventually sent off. Eto'o scored again on 13 September against Parma F.C., Samuel Eto'o first goal from open play in a Serie A match.

At the end of September 2009, Eto'o demanded almost £2.75 million from Barcelona after Samuel Eto'o transfer to Inter. The amount represented 15% of the US$29 million (£17.7 million) fee which Inter paid Barcelona in July 2009. The demand was based on a Spanish rule that a player should get 15% of the amount of Samuel Eto'o transfer to another Spanish club. If the parties failed to reach a solution, the matter could go to court.

Eto'o scored two goals during a thrilling win over U.S. Città di Palermo which ended 5–3, with a brace also being scored by Mario Balotelli.
Eto'o also scored in the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 against Chelsea F.C., in the second leg, on 16 March 2010, which allowed Inter to progress to the quarter-finals. On 5 May, Eto'o and Samuel Eto'o teammates helped Inter to lift the Italian Cup after defeating A.S. Roma 1–0 at the Stadio Olimpico. Inter's goal was scored by Argentina's Diego Milito.

On 22 May 2010, Eto'o played in the third 2010 UEFA Champions League Final of Samuel Eto'o career, and with Internazionale's triumph over FC Bayern Munich, Samuel Eto'o became the only player to win the Treble (association football) in consecutive seasons.

On 21 August 2010, Eto'o scored twice as Internazionale beat A.S. Roma 3–1 to win the 2010 Supercoppa Italiana. Samuel Eto'o first hat trick for Internazionale occurred in the UEFA Champions League against the German team SV Werder Bremen on 29 September 2010. Internazionale won the game 4–0, with Eto'o saying, "We will remain humble because we know that there are sides out there that are better than us, so we will just take it one match at a time and we will go as far as it takes us".

Continuing Samuel Eto'o outstanding form in Serie A and in the Champions League for the 2010–11 campaign, Samuel Eto'o was pivotal to Internazionale's attack line. On 16 March 2011, Eto'o gave a legendary performance in Munich as Samuel Eto'o helped Internazionale eliminate Bayern Munich 3–2 (with an aggregate score of 3–3, winning on away goals) in the Champions League. Eto'o scored the first goal after four minutes into play, as well as provided two clinical assists to Wesley Sneijder and to Goran Pandev for the winner. After the game, Inter President Massimo Moratti said, "I'm not sure if the deal that brought Eto'o to the club was my best piece of transfer business ever, but I really think it was a great piece of business for us. Eto'o is fantastic. I do not want to take anything away from Ibrahimovic, but for everyone it was really a great deal to get Eto'o. Samuel is truly extraordinary." On 29 May, Eto'o scored two goals in the 2011 Coppa Italia Final of the Italian Cup against U.S. Città di Palermo to help Internazionale win 3–1 and taking Samuel Eto'o total season goals to 37, a new record high for him.

Anzhi Makhachkala

On 23 August 2011, FC Anzhi Makhachkala reached an agreement with Internazionale to sign Eto'o in a three-year deal that is expected to make Samuel Eto'o the world's highest paid player, with a salary of €20 million after tax per season.
Eto'o made Samuel Eto'o debut for Anzhi on 27 August 2011 against FC Rostov when Samuel Eto'o came on as a substitute with 30 minutes to go in the game and scored an equalizer in the 80th minute from a cross by Yuri Zhirkov. Eto'o scored the opening goal in an entertaining 5-3 defeat at home to CSKA Moscow leaving Samuel Eto'o side four points above FC Krasnodar with only two games left for qualification to the 2011-12_Russian_Premier_League Championship_group.

International career

Eto'o earned Samuel Eto'o first cap with one day before Samuel Eto'o 16th birthday on 9 March 1997, in a 5–0 friendly loss to . In 1998, Samuel Eto'o was the youngest participant in the 1998 FIFA World Cup when Samuel Eto'o appeared in a 3–0 group stage loss to Italy national football team on 17 June 1998, at the age of 17 years and three months. Eto'o scored Samuel Eto'o sole goal of the 2002 FIFA World Cup when Samuel Eto'o netted the game-winner against Saudi Arabia national football team during the group stage on 6 June 2002, which was Cameroon's only win of the competition.

Eto'o was a part of the squads that won the 2000 African Cup of Nations and 2002 African Cup of Nations, and was a gold medalist at the Football at the 2000 Summer Olympics. At the 2003 FIFA Confederations Cup, in which Cameroon finished as runners-up, Samuel Eto'o scored Samuel Eto'o only goal in a 1–0 group-stage upset of Brazil national football team on 19 June. Cameroon were eliminated in the quarter-finals of the 2006 African Cup of Nations after Eto'o missed the decisive penalty in a 12–11 penalty shootout loss to Côte d'Ivoire national football team following a 1–1 draw, but Samuel Eto'o nonetheless finished as the top scorer of the tournament with five goals. Samuel Eto'o missed a team practice before the quarter-finals to attend the CAF African Footballer of the Year award ceremonies in Togo.

In the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations, Eto'o became joint leading goalscorer (along with Laurent Pokou) in the competition's history after scoring Samuel Eto'o 14th goal with a penalty against Zambia national football team on 26 January 2008. In the following game against Sudan national football team, on 30 January, Eto'o converted another penalty to become the tournament's all time leading scorer, followed by another goal in the same match that took Samuel Eto'o Africa Cup of Nations tally to 16. Samuel Eto'o finished as the top scorer for the second consecutive tournament, matching Samuel Eto'o 2006 total of five goals.

On 1 June 2008, Eto'o headbutted reporter Philippe Bony, following an incident at a press conference. Bony suffered an injury, but Eto'o later apologized for the altercation, offering to pay Bony's medical expenses.

In the 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying match against Gabon national football team, Eto'o scored a goal in the 68th minute. Samuel Eto'o followed it up with another goal in the home fixture. Samuel Eto'o lead the scoring chart with eight qualification goals. Eto'o scored in the World Cup qualification match against Morocco national football team to win Cameroon a spot in the 2010 FIFA World Cup tournament.

On 1 December 2009, Eto'o finished fifth in voting for the Ballon d'Or, which was won by Samuel Eto'o former Barcelona teammate Lionel Messi.

On 19 June 2010, Eto'o scored a goal in Cameroon's 2010 FIFA World Cup group stage match against Denmark national football team, from a mistake by Christian Poulsen. Cameroon eventually lost the game 2–1 and was eliminated from the World Cup. Eto'o described it as the biggest disappointment of Samuel Eto'o career. In December 2010, Eto'o became the first man to be named African Player of the Year for a fourth time.

On 16 December 2011, Eto'o was suspended for fifteen games by the Fédération Camerounaise de Football, after the team refused to play a friendly against earlier this year. The ban was reduced to eight months in January 2012, meaning Eto'o will only miss four competitive matches. The change was brought about after Cameroon president Paul Biya asked officials to reconsider the controversial sanction.

International goals


Personal life

Eto'o has two brothers: David Eto'o, who plays for FC Koper in Slovenia, and Etienne Eto'o, who is currently on loan to Pobla de Mafumet CF from Gimnàstic de Tarragona. Eto'o has four children : Maelle, Étienne, Siena and Lynn. Samuel Eto'o married Samuel Eto'o longtime sweetheart Georgette on 6 July 2007. They have two children together: Siena, and Lynn who both live along with Georgette in Paris, France.


Eto'o has experienced racial abuse in some away matches. Eto'o, along with former Barcelona teammate Thierry Henry and FC Universitatea Craiova defender Marco Zoro, have reacted by being outspoken in their criticism and threatening to leave the pitch.

In February 2005, during an away match with Real Zaragoza, Eto'o was the subject of racist taunts by Zaragoza supporters, who began making monkey-like chants onto the pitch whenever Samuel Eto'o had possession of the ball. The referee, however, Fernando Carmona Méndez, made no mention of the incidents in Samuel Eto'o match report, commenting only that the behavior of the crowd was "normal"; two of the abusers were caught and given five-month sporting-event bans after being identified to police by other spectators. Eto'o later declared that the punishment was insufficient and that La Romareda should have been closed for at least one year, but Frank Rijkaard told Samuel Eto'o to concentrate on football and to stop talking about the incident. Infuriated again by Zaragoza fans' racist chants the next season, however, Eto'o attempted to walk off the pitch in protest. Samuel Eto'o teammates intervened and convinced Samuel Eto'o to continue playing. Video of the incident captured Samuel Eto'o saying "No más" ("No more") as Samuel Eto'o walked to the sidelines.

On 17 October 2010, in a Serie A game against Cagliari Calcio, after just three minutes of play, the referee halted the match to give a warning to the Cagliari fans for their racist chants, which were directed towards Eto'o. After the play was resumed, the rest of the stadium chanted loudly in an attempt to drown out the racist chants in order for the match to not to be stopped. Ironically, Inter would go on to win 1–0 thanks to an Eto'o goal in the 39th minute.

Due to ongoing racism from La Liga crowds, Eto'o stopped bringing family members to matches. "It is something that has affected me personally. I think players, leaders, and the media have to join forces so that no one feels looked down upon because of the colour of their skin. At this moment in time I prefer my children don't go to football matches. In the stands they have to listen to things that are difficult to explain to a child. It is better they aren't exposed to it."


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