World football salutes Samuel Eto’o after striker retires

Former Barcelona striker Samuel Eto'o

Samuel Eto’o was hailed by Barcelona, Chelsea, Inter and Everton on social media after he signalled his intention to end his playing career.

Tributes to Samuel Eto’o have flooded in after the four-time African Player of the Year called time on his glittering playing career.

Eto’o signalled his intention to retire from the game in an Instagram post on Friday, in which he said: “THE END, TOWARDS A NEW CHALLENGE.”

The 38-year-old, who played for the likes of Real Mallorca, Barcelona, Inter and Chelsea, enjoyed a trophy-laden 22 years in the game.

His many achievements included back-to-back trebles with Barca and Inter between in 2009 and 2010. After helping Barcelona win LaLiga, the Copa del Rey and the Champions League, he joined Inter and starred in Jose Mourinho’s team as they lifted the Scudetto, the Coppa Italia and the Champions League.

He also won the Champions League with Barca in 2006 and was part of the Cameroon side that won the 2002 Africa Cup of Nations.

The official UEFA Champions League Twitter account shared a clip of Eto’o’s exquisite chipped goal against Panathanaikos in November 2005, which came during the first of his three triumphant campaigns in Europe’s top competition.

Eto’o scored nine Premier League goals in his season at Chelsea and three of them came in a 3-1 defeat of Manchester United at Stamford Bridge, which the Blues featured in a tweet wishing him a happy retirement.

Inter shared footage of Eto’o’s injury-time strike in a 2-0 victory over Juventus in April 2010, which helped steer the Nerazzurri to Serie A glory, adding the message: “Thank you for all those memories we’ll never forget!”

Eto’o scored three Premier League goals in 14 appearances for Everton in 2014-15 and the Goodison Park club shared a clip of his memorable brace for the Toffees in a 3-1 victory away at Burnley in October 2014.

He played some of his very best football during a five-year spell at Barcelona, and the club summed up his legacy at Camp Nou in one word, dubbing him a “LEGEND” while sharing a compilation of strikes for the Blaugrana.

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