Four-time African footballer of the year Samuel Eto’o has confirmed his retirement from professional football on social media after a 22-year of trophy-laden career.
The former Cameroon international joined Real Madrid’s academy system in 1996 and would get his first taste of first-team football the following year on the outskirts of the city during a loan spell with CD Leganés.
Eto’o most notably went on to lead the line for Barcelona before joining Italian giants Inter, but the 38-year-old has now confirmed that he’ll be hanging up his boots for good after a year playing in Qatar.
Having spent his youth career at Kadji Sports Academy, he joined Real Madrid where he was loaned to Leganes, Espanyol, and Mallorca.
His awe-inspiring form in Mallorca saw him join Barcelona in 2004. There, he won two Champions Leagues, four LaLiga titles, two Supercopa de Espana and one Copa del Rey. He also became the record holder for most LaLiga caps by an African.
At Inter Milan, he won his third Champions League under Jose Mourinho’s tutelage and also added Serie A, Supercoppa Italiana, Fifa Club World Cup, and Coppa Italia titles to his impressive haul of titles in Italy.
He was unable to collect any winners’ medals at Anzhi Makhachkala, Chelsea, Everton, Sampdoria, Antalyaspor and Konyaspor, before a move to Qatar SC.
On the international scene, he was the youngest player at the 1998 World Cup after making Cameroon squad at the age of 17.
Eto’o claimed gold at the 2000 Olympics as well as two Africa Cup of Nations titles in 2000 and 2002 scoring 18 goals with four African Player of the Year crowns – a record he shares with Cote d’Ivoire’s Yaya Toure.
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