FACTBOX-Soccer-African Footballer of the Year Samuel Eto'o


Mon, 20 Dec 19:46:00 2010

Factbox on Cameroon and Inter Milan striker Samuel Eto'o who was named on Monday the 2010 African Footballer of the Year.

Born: Nkon, Cameroon on March 10, 1981.


* Won his first international cap with Cameroon the day before his 16th birthday in 1997 in a friendly in Costa Rica. Went to the 1998 World Cup finals and came on as a substitute against Italy as the youngest player in the tournament.

* Scored his first international goal in the African Nations Cup in 2000, which Cameroon won, and later in the year helped the country's under-23 side win Olympic gold with a final triumph over Spain in Sydney.

* Retained the African Nations Cup title in 2002 in Mali when Cameroon beat Senegal on penalties after 0-0 draw in the final in Bamako.

* Was named African Footballer of the year for a record-equalling three successive years between 2004 and 2006.

* Became the highest scorer in the African Nations Cup in 2008.

* Two goals for Cameroon in the African Nations Cup in Angola in 2010 took his scoring record to 18.


* Left the Kadji sports academy in Cameroon to join Real Madrid in 1997 after impressing on a tour of Spain. A loan deal to Real Mallorca in 2000 was eventually made permanent, though Real retained an option on him.

* Won the King's Cup with Mallorca in 2003 and became the club's all-time top scorer in the league with 54 goals before signing for Barcelona in 2004 for 24 million euros.


* Top scorer for the Catalan club with 24 goals as Barca won their first league title in six years in 2005.

* Barca won a double the following season with Eto'o topping the Primera Liga's scoring charts with 26 goals to help them retain their league crown. He also scored the opener as Barca came back to beat Arsenal 2-1 in the Champions League final.

* Barca said he was surplus to requirements at the end of the 2007/8 campaign but incoming coach Pep Guardiola changed his mind.

* Excelled with 30 league goals and scored the opener in the 2009 Champions League final as Barca beat Manchester United 2-0 to complete a league, King's Cup and European treble.

* Was subjected to racial abuse at a number of Spanish football grounds. In Feb. 2006, tried to leave the pitch during a league match at Real Zaragoza after receiving racist abuse from home fans.


* Ends a protracted transfer in 2009 by moving to Italy's Inter Milan as part of a deal which sees Inter striker Ibrahimovic join Barcelona.

* Won a treble in 2010 as Inter Milan claimed the Serie A, Champions League and Italian Cup trophies and completed an impressive year by winning the Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi in December.


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