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Samuel Eto'o Fils

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Samuel Eto'o Fils

Footballer

Eto O
Date of Birth:
1981-03-10
Place of Birth:
Douala

Chelsea striker, Samuel Eto'o Fils is a sporting hero in Cameroon and indeed around the world. In 2010, he became the first player to win two European continental trebles following his back-to-back achievements with Barcelona and Inter Milan.

He 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.

Born in March 1981 Eto'o trained at Kadji Sports Academy. His Spanish passport means he is not listed among the "foreign players" working in the European Union countries. Eto'o had scored over 100 goals in five seasons with Barcelona, and he is also a record holder in terms of numbers of appearances by an African player in La Liga.

He is the most decorated African player of all time; having won the African Player of the Year award four consecutive times: in 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2010. He was third in the FIFA World Player of the Year award in 2005. As a member of the Cameroon national team, Eto'o was a part of the squad that won the 2000 Olympic tournament.

He has also participated in three World Cups and six Africa Cup of Nations (being champion twice) and he remains the all-time leading scorer in the history of the Africa Cup of Nations, with 18 goals. He is also Cameroon's all-time leading scorer and third most capped player, with 55 goals from 112 caps.

Club Career

Real Madrid (1997-2000) Samuel Eto'o joined Real Madrid's youth academy in 1997, but he could only train with Real Madrid B, as he 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, he was loaned to second-division CD Leganés for the 1997–98 season, when he was only in the tenth grade. After making 30 appearances for the club and only scoring four goals, he returned to Madrid following the end of the 1998–99 season. In January 1999, he was loaned out to RCD Espanyol, but failed to make any appearances for the club.

Mallorca (2000-2004)

The next season, in the winter transfer window, he 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 his second season, he scored 11 goals and began to garner attention throughout the league.

Mallorca President Mateo Alemany said of his 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 his 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."

He returned the fans' appreciation when he 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. His 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 him with four accomplices, saying, "They then took off my shoes, which in Cameroon means I am threatened with death."

Barcelona (2004–2009)

Eto'o departed Mallorca as the club's all-time leading domestic league scorer (54 goals) when he 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 him 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

Inter Milan (2009-2011)

After Maxwell completed the transfer from Inter Milan, Joan Laporta confirmed that there was an agreement in principle between Barcelona and Inter Milan for Zlatan Ibrahimovi? to join the club in exchange for Eto'o and €46 million. After Ibrahimovi? agreed terms with Barcelona, the club announced Eto'o would travel to Milan for his medical to complete the transfer.

Anzhi Makhachkala (2011-2013)

On 23 August 2011, Anzhi Makhachkala reached an agreement with Inter Milan to sign Eto'o in a three-year deal that made him the world's highest paid player, with a salary of €20 million after tax, per season.

Eto'o made his debut for Anzhi on 27 August 2011 against FC Rostov when he 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 a 5–3 defeat at home to CSKA Moscow, leaving his side four points above Krasnodar with only two games left for qualification to the Championship Group.

At the end of the 2012–13 Russian Premier League, Eto made it to the top 33 players of the season list as the #1 Right Striker. Anzhi's billionaire owner Suleiman Kerimov earlier this month (August 2013) shocked the Russian football world by deciding to scale down the club's ambitions and drastically shrink its budget. As a result, almost all of the star players, who were signed in a bid to make the club world beaters, are being put on the market.

Chelsea (2013)

On 29 August 2013, Eto'o signed a one-year deal with English side Chelsea, for an undisclosed fee. He reportedly took a huge pay cut from €20 million a season down to €8 million to sign for Chelsea. He scored his first goal for Chelsea on the 19th October 2013 against Cardiff City, in which he gave Chelsea the lead.

International Career

Eto'o earned his first cap with Cameroon a day before his 16th birthday on 9 March 1997, in a 5–0 friendly loss to Costa Rica. In 1998, he was the youngest participant in the 1998 FIFA World Cup when he appeared in a 3–0 group stage loss to Italy on 17 June 1998, at the age of 17 years and three months. Eto'o scored his sole goal of the 2002 World Cup.

Personal life

Eto'o has two brothers who are also footballers: David and Étienne, Three sisters Pauline, Madeleine and Sidonie. Eto'o has four children: Maelle, Étienne, Siena and Lynn. He married his longtime sweetheart Georgette on 6 July 2007. Georgette is the mother of Siena and Lynn, who both live with her in Paris, France.

Earnings

Samuel Eto'o was the world's second highest-earning sportsperson when he played for Anzhi Makhachkala (2011 - 2013), after the golfer Tiger Woods. He was the highest-paid footballer in the world, earning £35.7 million (over $54 million) per year, excluding off-field endorsements.

Racism

Eto'o has experienced racial abuse in some away matches. He is one of several high-profile contemporary players to have reacted to the abuse by threatening to leave the pitch and being outspoken in criticism of their experiences.

Samuel Eto'o Foundation

Samuel Eto'o Foundation was established in March 2006. It was incorporated as a nonprofit organization with activities mainly concentrated in West Africa. Its aim is to protect children and youth by providing emergency assistance and promoting education, health and social inclusion for the most disadvantaged to help build opportunities for the future.

He is the head of Fund sport project, four training centers based in Cameroon (Douala, Yaounde , Limbe and Bamenda ) and one in Gabon (Libreville) . These offer the best opportunities for young African athletes, using football as a tool for social, economic and cultural value exchange, as well as providing employment for the youth. Young people like Lionel Enguene , Jean -Marie Dongou and Gael Etock have passed through La Masia integrated (training center of Barcelona ) . Fabrice Olinga , now 16 years old Cameroon international , also passed through Fund sport .

Records • Top scorer in the history of Cameroon with 55 goals • Top scorer in the history of the African Cup of Nations with 18 goals (a record previously held by the Ivorian Laurent Poku with 14 goals ) • Best scorer with 67 goals at RCD Mallorca • 4th top scorer in the history of FC Barcelona (tied with Rivaldo ) with 130 goals behind Lionel Messi, César Rodríguez and Ladislao Kubala • 14th top scorer with 161 goals in Spain • The highest paid footballer in the world in terms of salary with 20.5 million per year between 2011 and 2013