Charpter 1

The 38-year-old Eto’o posted this photo in black on his social account to announce his retirement and wrote: “Everything is over. I want to face new challenges. Thank you for your love.”

Cheetah’s sudden confession sparked a heated discussion about who is the best in African history. In the history of African football, in terms of personal performance, George Weah, as a Mr. Golden Ball, has no equal.

If we talk about super popularity, then Drogba is popular all over the world.

If we look at the number of championships and their gold content, Eto’o, who has 18 championship trophies, is well-deserved. As quick as the wind, as alert as a leopard, 23 years flew by and turned into a shadow in the wind.

Hunting Shadows in the Wind, Eto’o’s Story

The 38-year-old No. 9 Milla has achieved another great feat. This also heralds the emergence of the first football team in the history of African football to enter the top eight of the World Cup.

Since then, playing football like Milla has become the dream of countless African children. Among them is young Eto’o.

In Eto’o’s later published comic autobiography, he described his crazy admiration for Milla as a child.

But like all African teenagers from poor families, in addition to talent and love, they also need luck to continue their football story.

But Eto’o is undoubtedly lucky. At the age of 13, a professional scout named Yakub accidentally discovered Eto’o during a street football game and introduced him to professional football.

Later, Eto’o, like many African children, went to various clubs in France for trial training, but he repeatedly ran into obstacles. When he returned to his hometown in frustration, he was spotted by a Real Madrid scout who immediately gave him a ticket to Madrid. From then on, Eto’o began his life in another world.

From a poor hometown to the metropolis of Madrid, from an ignorant boy to having zero contact with superstars. Not understanding Spanish and afraid to communicate with his teammates, Eto’o, who was only 16 years old at the time, had a difficult time when he first arrived at Real Madrid.

Fortunately, someone reached out to the troubled Eto’o at this time. He was the then Real Madrid coach Capello.

After only watching one of Eto’o’s training sessions, Capello decided to keep him. However, getting a contract does not mean being able to represent the team. The cruel fact is that in the past three years, Eto’o has only had 7 opportunities to play for Real Madrid’s first team in all competitions, let alone score. Most of the time, he was kicked around by the club like a ball, and was loaned out to Leganes in La Liga, Espanyol in La Liga and Hualoka.

An important reason why Eto’o was left out was President Fiorentino’s dismissive attitude towards him. Lafayette, who has always valued star power, is more concerned about the commercial value of players, but in his eyes Eto’o is a commodity that does not have an overly high value. The Bernabeu gave him a starting point that everyone longed for, but it also gave him heart-wrenching hurt.

In the summer of 2000, from the moment Mallorca took Eto’o away from Real Madrid, the seeds of revenge had slowly sprouted.

Few people know that one of Etoe’s earliest nicknames was “Can Opener”, describing his lightning-like speed when dribbling the ball. Handing the ball to him was like pulling up a can opener, practical and convenient, in the blink of an eye. The ball went in. Later, Cheetah gradually became his most widely recognized nickname. This beast, the fastest on the savannah, finally started a crazy chase on the Spanish island.

In 4 seasons in Mallorca, the Cheetah contributed 70 goals, becoming the top scorer in the history of the Mallorca team, and also established his reputation as the top striker in La Liga.

The 2003 Copa del Rey final was Eto’o’s battle for the gods in Mallorca. In this game, the Cheetahs scored twice and also created penalty kick opportunities for their teammates. He almost single-handedly helped Mallorca beat Huelva 3:0 to win the cup.

This is Mallorca’s first and only major championship trophy so far, and it is also the true first club championship trophy in Eto’o’s career.

But for Eto’o, what is more meaningful than winning the championship is the Copa del Rey quarter-finals in the same year. Because standing opposite him is his old club Real Madrid.

Before the game, Eto’o took the initiative to walk to the Real Madrid bench to express his friendliness, but in the subsequent game he was not friendly at all.

The cheetah who ignited the flames of revenge was extremely ferocious and led the Mallorca team to go on a killing spree. He himself even contributed two goals and finally humiliated the old team 4:0.

What was even more unexpected was that when Mallorca met Real Madrid again in the league soon, it was Eto’o who contributed two assists and a goal, breaking the Bernabeu’s two-year unbeaten streak at home. The Galaxy Battleship suffered a historic defeat of 1:5.

Eto’o even received applause from the entire Bernabeu when he was substituted. He has since earned a reputation as a Real Madrid killer.

At the end of the 03/04 season, Eto’o led Mallorca to the Bernabeu turf for the fourth time. Before the game, the home fans tried to scare the Cheetah with huge boos, but unexpectedly it fueled his desire for revenge.

In the 11th minute, Eto’o opened the scoring. After scoring, he made a shut-up gesture in response to the Bernabeu fans who had booed him.

In the 36th minute, the Cheetah once again targeted its prey. He picked up the ball near the center circle and then rode alone for thousands of miles to get rid of Figo, Harvin, Bravo and Beckham before completing the goal.

At 3:2, the Cheetah once again killed his old team Real Madrid. The moment the final whistle blew, he was extremely excited. Every goal he scored for Real Madrid seemed to vent his past hatred. The reputation of the Real Madrid killer spread far and wide.

This finally made Real Madrid’s rival Barcelona unable to sit still. They were determined to capture Real Madrid’s killer Eto’o, and finally got their wish in 2004. They bought out half of Eto’o’s ownership from Real Madrid and Mallorca for 24 million euros each.

Real Madrid originally intended to take back Eto’o, but a good horse never looks back, let alone a proud cheetah. The Bernabeu paid the price for its initial contempt. Not only did they lose one of their top forwards, but worse still, they sent him to their biggest rival.

Camp Nou, a football temple revered by thousands of people. However, when Eto’o arrived, this place had been away from the La Liga championship for 5 years.

Chairman Laporta and head coach Rijkaard, who took office a year ago, are ambitious. In 2003, they made a high-profile purchase of Ronaldinho. In 2004, they continued to recruit troops and prepared for the renaissance of red and blue.

And Cheetah Eto’o is the submachine gun on the road to revival at Camp Nou. In the first round of the new season, Eto’o scored his first goal by killing Santander in the middle of Barcelona’s debut.

Against his old club Mallorca, Eto’o once again stood on the penalty spot with mixed emotions, but this time he did not celebrate after scoring, and the Mallorca fans also expressed their collective gratitude when the cheetah was substituted. of applause.

In sharp contrast, two months later, Eto’o’s attitude when facing another old club, Real Madrid. This is the Cheetah’s first Spanish El Clasico, and people are waiting to see if the Real Madrid killer can once again stage a happy feud after changing the door.

The fact is that less than 30 minutes later, the goal was scored by the former abandoned Eto’o because of a stupid mistake at Camp Nou. It is a great shame!

In the stands, Real Madrid president Florentillo’s face was livid, looking at the glorious Cheetah. At this time, he must be tasting the bitterness of regret.

In the second half of the game, Eto’o once again used lightning speed to tear apart Real Madrid’s defense, went to the penalty area alone, and created a penalty kick opportunity for Ronaldinho.

After the game, he went straight to the stands to hug Uncle Mira, who came specially to watch his game. Now, his childhood dream of playing football like Mila has come true, and Eto’o has become the pride of his hometown people.

Charpter 2

Camp Nou opens a path to stardom for Eto’o

He scored 24 goals in his first season. If it weren’t for the fact that the team was full of injuries at the end of the season, which affected his combat effectiveness, the top scorer in La Liga that year would not be Diego Forlan, who came from behind.

The European Golden Boot will not be Henry who only scored one more goal than the Cheetahs.

Camp Nou finally found the best partner for their king Ronaldinho

The situation of two heroes competing for hegemony that has not been seen for many years has finally reappeared in La Liga.

From 10 consecutive unbeaten games at the beginning of the season to 84 points at the end of the season, Barcelona surpassed Real Madrid and became the points leader in a single season in La Liga history. They finally won the championship two rounds ahead of schedule and won their first league championship trophy in 6 seasons.

After seven years of wandering, only Eto’o himself can understand the sadness and difficulty during this period.

At the Camp Nou championship celebration, the cheetah Eto’o, who had been suppressed for too long, let out his anger and shouted this famous championship declaration: “Madrid, bastard, salute the champion!”. Eto’o shouted this sentence 6 times. The 100,000 people at Camp Nou echoed in unison. The outspoken vent of the old club of the Cheetahs added the most straightforward expression to the century-old feud between Real Madrid and Barcelona. Although he publicly apologized the next day, Cheetah’s personality of yesterday’s me being indifferent and today’s me being so out of reach is also evident on the page.

In the following 05/06 season, Europe’s golden boy Messi gradually became the main player of the Dream Team.

The attacking trident of Ronaldinho, Messi and Eto’o is impressive. This also makes people seem to see the dream partnership formed by Romagno and Stoichkov in the Barcelona Dream Team.

Eto’o made up for missing out on the league’s Golden Boot last season with 26 goals.

At the end of 2005, Cheetah stood on the World Footballer’s podium in third place. He became the second African player to be shortlisted for the top three World Footballer titles after Weah.

At the same time, from 2003 to 2005, Eto’o became the African Footballer of the Year for three consecutive years. Coupled with his fourth election in 2010, he became one of the most popular African footballers in history.

At the same time, the Barcelona Dream Team also reached its peak moment. While they easily defended the league championship, they were invincible in the European competition. They finally reached the Champions League final.

On May 17, 2006, at the Parc des Princes in Paris, the Cheetah’s big heart once again became the key to Barcelona’s victory.

In the Champions League final against Arsenal, in just 18 minutes, Eto’o used a quick breakthrough to cause the opponent’s goalkeeper Lehmann to receive a red card, putting Arsenal into a passive situation with one less player.

Although Quimper opened the scoring in the first half, Rijschild made two key substitutions in the second half that turned the tide of the game.

In the 76th minute, it was Eto’o who came on as a substitute and passed a pass from Larsson. The Cheetahs were waiting for the opportunity to equalize the score.

Eto’o: “In the first half, we didn’t play as well as we should have. I remember coming back to the dressing room at midfield and telling my teammates that we are the best team in the world. On the football field, You will lose, you will draw, you will win, but as long as you step on the court, you must have the belief to overcome everything. When the second half started, it was completely different from the first half. We enjoyed everything in Paris. 45 minutes and we won.”

The glory of the Barcelona Dream Team reached its peak at this moment.

But this is also the limit. In the next two seasons, the defending champion fell into the embarrassment of being without a championship for two consecutive years. The second dream team showed signs of exhaustion.

Ronaldinho’s slack state gradually faded out of the main lineup, and Rijschild also gradually lost control of the locker room. Before Messi can take the lead alone, Henry still needs time to adjust. Eto’o is almost Barcelona’s only big leg during this trough. Although he also suffered several injuries, as long as he was on the court, the Cheetah went all out. It can be said that it is Eto’o’s efficiency that ensures Barcelona’s smooth transition from the second dream team to the third dream team.

Until this person comes. No one expected that Guardiola, who had no first-team coaching experience, would make Ronaldinho his first statement after taking office. Neither Deco nor Eto’o was in his plan. Guardiola has a clear goal, which is to completely change the team of Dream Team 2 and strive to build a new team based on La Masia’s youth training.

Soon Ronaldinho was sent to Milan and Deco was sent to London. Eto’o chose to stay with the team because there was no better contract. In the new Barcelona with Messi, Xavi, Iniesta and Busquets as the core, the cheetah is obviously alone. Guardiola hopes that he can give Messi more space, so he often teaches Eto’o how to move. This has also become the trigger of the conflict between Guardiola and Eto’o.

Eto’o: “I told Guardiola that you should apologize to me, because I let you win, not Messi. This is Eto’o’s era. Messi is the future leader, as long as you ask the team The players here, whether it is Xavi or Iniesta, they all admit that this is my era and I made Barcelona win, so Guardiola should apologize to me.”

In addition to Messi, Guardiola still ranks Henry above Eto’o.

During training in the United States, Eto’o was asked to exchange his No. 9 jersey for Henry’s No. 14 jersey. This made Cheetah feel insulted, and he immediately contradicted Guashuai’s decision. The conflict between the two intensified.

Eto’o said: “Guardiola completely disrespected me and I couldn’t accept that. I only spoke to Guardiola twice the next season. Once he asked me to communicate with Yaya Toure because he communicated with both There was difficulty. Another time he wanted to teach me how to move. I replied to him: “You were playing as a midfielder, not a forward. Did you see the goal I just scored? So what you said is wrong. “Another time during training, I created a shooting opportunity for Messi without the ball. Messi completed it in one go and scored. Guardiola actually ran over and said it was not good. I thought there was something wrong with his brain at the time. “

Despite the sharp conflict with coach Zhu, Eto’o did not affect his performance on the court.

In the 08/09 season, his importance to the Red and Blues is still irreplaceable. Throughout the 0809 season, Eto’o contributed 36 goals, only 2 goals less than Messi. The new trident he formed with Henry Messi is as good as the Ronaldinho era.

In the Champions League final of that season, Eto’o gave Guardiola a great gift. At the beginning of the game, Manchester United once had the advantage on the field, but Barcelona scored in the first threatening attack. It was Eto’o who seized this opportunity.

Eto’o: “It was a wonderful night. I broke the deadlock with a goal that I thought was beautiful.”

Ferguson: “We went into the game the right way, I saw the confidence and we played well and should have taken the lead. But the first goal ‘killed’ us. We tried to come back but then the other team got better.” of the party.”

It was this goal that Sir Alex Ferguson said killed Manchester United, making Eto’o the second player after Raul to score in two Champions League finals since the Champions League was restructured.

In the second half, Messi’s header locked the game at 2:0. Barcelona achieved their first treble in team history. This also laid the foundation for their final six-time championship in 2009.

But despite his impressive achievements for Barcelona, ​​the cheetah Eto’o is still the number one player on Guardiola’s end-of-season purge list.

Faced with public questions about why the cheetah had to leave, Guardiola explained: “I don’t know how to express it. It seems crazy to say it’s my sense of smell. Maybe it feels better. It’s just a feeling, nothing else. reason”

It doesn’t feel right, that’s how Guardiola said it when he explained why Eto’o had to leave Barcelona. The perfunctory meaning could not be more obvious.

As the African player with the most goals in the history of La Liga, he cannot get a contract extension in exchange. Camp Nou is no longer worth remembering, and the red and blue years of the Cheetah have since turned into a fleeting glimpse in the memory.

In the summer of 2009, Eto’o accepted a striker swap deal between Inter Milan and Barcelona. He used himself plus 46 million euros to get Ibrahimovic from Camp Nou. This transaction, which shocked the world at the time, was controversial.

Reporter: “Inter Milan fans are troubled by one thing. Ibrahimovic kissed his new Barcelona jersey but you did not kiss Inter Milan’s jersey.”

Eto’o: “I won’t judge what Ibrahimovic did. That’s his freedom. He can kiss the jersey if he wants to. It’s okay. I am Eto’o and I never compare myself to others.”

Eto’o left his Inter Milan debut and first goal in Beijing. In the Italian Super Cup hosted by the Bird’s Nest for the first time, he also scored the only goal of the game for the Nerazzurri.

Two weeks later, the Cheetahs ushered in their first Milan Derby at San Siro. In the 25th minute, the confrontation between him and Ronaldinho was directly embarrassing. The two stars who fought side by side at the Nou Camp are now in another world. This game was a technical competition between these former teammates. Later, he staged a very fast breakthrough, which made Gattuso, who was defending him, exhausted. Gattuso had no choice but to resort to fouls to stop the cheetahs. This also provided Mili with Tuo created a penalty kick opportunity.

In contrast, Ronaldinho was in a sluggish mood throughout the game, was substituted early, and was completely upstaged by his old teammates. Inter Milan finally won 4:0. After blowing the clarion call for the attack of that glorious season, Eto’o has achieved a seamless connection with his new club, especially his new head coach, who is preparing to stimulate the greater energy contained in the Cheetahs.

Mourinho, a person whose personality is even better than Guardiola. For Eto’o, who regards himself as aloof, this is not a coach he can get along with better than his predecessor. Unexpectedly, Eto’o not only obeyed Mourinho’s instructions and changed from the right to the left, but also willingly gave up the C position to Milito on the tactical board. Unexpectedly, these two people with very strong personalities would develop a sympathetic friendship. To this day, in Eto’o’s mind, Mourinho is still an almost perfect coach.

Charpter 3

Eto’o: “Mourinho is a very good person and a very good coach. He is one of the few people I have ever seen who never puts down his pride. I never put down my pride. But Mourinho is prouder than me. Our year together at Inter Milan was unforgettable and we won almost everything.”

The cheetah, tamed under Mourinho, sprinted at his ultimate speed. In his first season with Inter Milan, although he only scored 16 goals, he can be called a versatile player for the Nerazzurri. Especially after entering the knockout rounds of the Champions League, Inter Milan has almost won all the top European league championship teams. Eto’o’s position on the field has been changing with different teams. In Mourinho’s anti-counterattack system, the Cheetah is the sharpest and most flexible chess piece, and this season’s Champions League semi-finals and finals are like an “Avenger” specially rehearsed for the Cheetah.

Facing Barcelona in the semi-finals was seen as Eto’o’s revenge against Guardiola. In the first round at Viacha, the Nerazzurri perfectly interpreted the performance of a counterattack master. After falling behind by one goal, they scored 3 goals in a row to complete the comeback. It laid the foundation for the second round of the game.

After the game, Eto’o hugged his former teammates one by one, especially the shortened handshake with Guardiola this time, which seemed to indicate that the relationship between the two has tended to ease.

In the second round, the Cheetahs returned to Camp Nou. This scene of him and Ibrahimovic high-fiving each other before the game is very touching now. If we could turn back time, without the trade in which the two swapped clubs a year ago, the ending of this season might have been rewritten.

Mourinho, who decided to defend, made a temporary arrangement during the halftime break and even arranged for Eto’o, who was supposed to be attacking in front of the goal, to play as a full-back instead. Regarding this amazing arrangement of the head coach, the Cheetah not only completely obeyed, but also completed the task successfully with tireless steals and interceptions throughout the second half. The sacrifice he showed in this game has impressed Mourinho. Pique’s late goal didn’t help matters. Inter Milan shattered Barcelona’s dream of defending the title with a total score of 3:2 over two rounds. Mourinho fulfilled the promise he made when he took office and led Inter Milan to the Champions League final after 38 years.

After leaving Camp Nou, the Cheetah returned to his other previous home, the Bernabeu. This is the venue for the Champions League final. Don’t forget, the name that has always scared the Bernabeu the most is Eto’o.

Before the game, Mourinho specifically gave Eto’o the task of mobilizing the locker room. He hopes that the special revenge temperament of the Cheetahs can inspire the fighting spirit of all blue and black soldiers.

This game is a classic battle for Argentine striker Milito. In the 39th minute, Milito opened the scoring, giving Inter Milan the advantage. Milito scored twice in the 70th minute. And his second goal that sealed the victory came from Cheetah Eto’o’s precise assist near the center circle. Lifting the Champions League trophy for the first time in 45 years, the Nerazzurri became the first treble winner in the history of the Apennine Peninsula. And Eto’o also made history. He became the only player so far to represent two teams and win the Triple Crown for two consecutive years.

When the flowers are gone, even if you are reluctant to give up, you must continue to move forward. In the season after the Triple Crown, the Nerazzurri suffered an overall decline. In contrast, the Cheetahs’ personal condition became increasingly better. Although he has reached the age of 30, the years have not left any traces on him. On the contrary, after time has passed, the cheetah has become more alert and better able to wait for opportunities.

In the 10-11 season, Eto’o scored an astonishing 37 goals in all competitions. It broke Ronaldo’s record of 34 goals in a single season set by Inter Milan 13 years ago. It can be said that it was Eto’o’s outstanding performance that ensured that Inter Milan could maintain its runner-up ranking in the league during the fluctuation period after creating great achievements. This also enabled the Nerazzurri to win five crowns in 2010.

At that time, no one thought that the cheetah’s next stop would be Russia. In the summer of 2011, Eto’o landed in Moscow and joined the Anzhi team invested by Russian billionaire Klimov. The Anzhi team spent a lot of money to offer the Cheetah an annual salary of 20 million euros. This is nearly twice as much as Cristiano Ronaldo, the former highest-paid player in the world. As a result, Eto’o replaced Ronaldo and became the new working emperor of football. At the Anzhi Club, not only a private luxury car was arranged for Eto’o, but he was even equipped with a private jet. In addition, Eto’o himself lives a high-profile life and loves all kinds of luxury goods and expensive sports cars. For a time, there was a lot of criticism about Cheetah’s money worship.

The fact is that the Cheetahs did perform on the court at a high level worthy of their high salary. In Anzhi, Eto’o scored a total of 36 goals and led the team to create the best record in team history of third place in the league in one season.

In 2013, the Anzhi team fell into a financial crisis, and Eto’o returned to Europe as a free agent. Although there were many invitations from wealthy clubs, he would rather take a salary cut to join Chelsea. Because here is one of his old friends, Mourinho.

Madman and Mourinho, the master and apprentice who created a legend at Meazza three years ago, are now renewing their relationship at Stamford Bridge. But the beginning at Stamford Bridge was not as good as Meazza.

Mourinho: “Now he is slowly returning to a better condition. Eto’o is 32 years old and he is very healthy now. He has maintained a good figure and is not overweight.”

Reporter: “Eto’o’s performance is getting better and better. He is much better than when he first came, isn’t he?”

Mourinho: “He’s 32, maybe 35, at least I don’t know.”

Mourinho: “I didn’t suggest (him doing this), but I know, we all know.” Reporter: “Did you talk before the game?”. Mourinho: “No, but I know. I don’t think it’s just a joke. The best way to solve the problem is to joke, some people are very good at retouching pictures. No need now, they just use the most real photos. “.

In the red-blue battle between Chelsea and Manchester United at home, Eto’o used a hat-trick to help the Nerazzurri defeat their old enemy 3:1. It also ushered in 5 consecutive victories for Stamford Bridge. In one season at Chelsea, Eto’o played 35 games and contributed 12 goals and 6 assists. His miraculous ability to score goals in key matches remains the same as before.

In the summer of 2014, the Cheetah, who left the Blue Bridge, gradually faded out of people’s sight. He also announced his withdrawal from the Cameroon national team after 17 years of playing.

Compared with his brilliant career at the club, Cheetah’s experience with the Cameroon team was not everything going as planned.

In 1998, during his first World Cup trip, he set a record for that World Cup. Eto’o, who was only 17 years and 3 months old at the time, made his debut as a substitute in the group match against Italy. Today, after the Cheetahs retired, there are only four active players who participated in the 1998 World Cup. No matter how fast you are, you will eventually be surpassed by time.

98 years later, the Cameroon football team has ushered in a golden age. At the 2000 Sydney Olympics, they came back from two goals behind. In the final against Spain, Eto’o scored the key goal to equalize the score. They brought Cameroon their first Olympic gold medal in history.

In 2003, this young African lion won the runner-up in the Confederations Cup. They dedicated the medals to Vivian Fu in heaven. At the same time, the Cameroon team also successfully defended its title in the African Cup of Nations. Eto’o himself later became a legend in the history of the African Cup of Nations. He participated in the competition 5 times and won the Golden Boot twice. He is still the top scorer in the history of the African Cup of Nations.

However, no matter how many trophies there are in intercontinental events, they cannot make up for the regrets of the World Cup. In the World Cup in Korea and Japan, although Eto’o scored his first World Cup goal in the game against Saudi Arabia. But in the end, it could not save Cameroon from being eliminated in the group stage.

In the 2006 World Cup qualifiers, Cameroon was involved in a penalty kick incident in the last minute of a life-or-death battle with Egypt. In the face of this critical penalty that determines whether to get a ticket to the World Cup, it was neither the team’s top star Eto’o nor the experienced captain Song who took the penalty. But full-back Wurm. This inevitably makes people suspicious. As a result, Wurm kicked away the African Lion’s ticket to Germany. At the same time, this penalty kick incident also made Eto’o bear the infamy of evading responsibility.

Four years later, Cameroon returned to the World Cup finals. As the captain, for Eto’o, as long as he can lead the team to qualify for the World Cup held on the African continent, it will be considered a success.

It’s a pity that the fullness of ideals is hard to match the skinny texture of reality. Although the cheetah’s personal status is brave. In the games against Denmark and the Netherlands, two goals were scored, but this was also all the goals scored by Cameroon in the World Cup in South Africa. The African Lions were in poor overall form and suffered three consecutive defeats, becoming the first team to be eliminated from the World Cup in South Africa. Eto’o had no choice but to leave sadly in his third World Cup trip.

In 2014, he led the team to the World Cup for the fourth time. But this time, he first led the national team to challenge the Cameroon Football Association. The appearance fee paid by the Cameroon Football Association for each international player is not as high as it was 4 years ago, which makes Eto’o very angry. So he shouted to the Football Association as the leader, saying that if the bonus was not increased, he would refuse to board the flight to Brazil. The Cameroon Football Association was under pressure and had to increase the appearance fee and paid part of it in advance to settle the matter. The African lion arrived in Brazil a full day later than originally planned. In fact, for Eto’o, who plays in Europe’s top leagues, the bonuses for a few national team games are nothing. He fought for the rights and dignity that official African players deserve.

The bonus controversy before the World Cup has not yet subsided. Just a few days after the World Cup started, Eto’o grabbed the headlines again. In the first match against Mexico in the group stage, Eto’o performed mediocrely and Cameroon lost 0:1.

Unexpectedly, this was the Cheetahs’ farewell game to the World Cup. Cameroon’s second match against Croatia, Eto’o did not play due to injury. Throughout the game, he sat on the bench as anxious as an ant on a hot pot. Because he saw that the Cameroon players on the field seemed to be out of shape. Towards the end of the game, Cameroon defender Hector and teammate Moucancho actually fought each other in front of the goal.

Later, the German magazine Der Spiegel also revealed evidence that the game was rigged. The African Lions really lost both games and people this time. The Cheetahs’ last World Cup trip could only end miserably.

Two months after the World Cup, Eto’o announced his retirement from the national team. In the history of the Cameroon national team, he left a record of 118 appearances and 56 goals. He is the top scorer in the history of the African Lions and ranks second in history in appearances. The era when cheetahs ruled the lions of Africa has turned into a gale of wind under their feet. Although he parted ways with the national team, Eto’o is still eager to reflect his value in the top league. But at the age of 33, it is already difficult for him to occupy the absolute main position in any team.

Although Everton scored his first goal in his debut against his old club Chelsea, most of the time he could only rank behind Lukaku, who was one round younger than him, waiting for the opportunity to play.

Moving to Sampdoria in Serie A, he was almost the team’s last choice on the front line. Only two goals scored in 18 games. In the end, the club broke up due to liquidated damages.

For the arrogant Cheetah, the days of being a spare tire in European competitions are really frustrating. So after a brief stay at Everton and Sampdoria for one season, he went to Antalyaspor in the Turkish Super League. There is only one reason for choosing this place, because he is still regarded as the savior here. He is still the core figure in this arena. Putting on the captain’s armband and regaining his shooting boots, this is the football life the Cheetahs want. At Antalya Sports, Eto’o quickly showed his outstanding strength. At the age of 36, he can still reach the top three scorers. At the same time, as captain, he led Antalyaspor to the best-ever ranking of fifth in the league.

After the team’s head coach was dismissed at the end of 2015, Eto’o was appointed to temporarily coach the team as a player-coach for one month. This also became a special experience in his career.

After 2018, Eto’o moved to Türkiye’s Konya Sports and Qatar Sports. Finally, I chose to say goodbye to football in the Asian arena.

Four European top league titles, three Champions League Gold Cups, two Triple Crown honors, four African Footballers of the Year, and one Olympic gold medal. No matter how fast you run, you will eventually be surpassed by time. But the light of honor shown by Cheetah Eto’o will always shine.