Cameroon’s 54-goal all-time leading scorer Samuel Eto’o has announced his retirement from football after a trophy-laden 22-year playing career.
The 38-year-old who retired from international football five years ago is best remembered for his glittering spell at Barcelona, helping the Spanish giants to win three La Liga titles and two Champions League triumphs.
The former Barcelona, Inter and Real Madrid player made his international debut in 1997 during a 5-0 defeat to Costa Rica.
He went on to become an Olympic gold medallist at Sydney 2000, scoring in the final against Spain to take the match to extra-time and also slotting home his kick in the penalty shoot-out victory.
He also won the Africa Cup of Nations in 2000 and 2004 with the Indomitable Lions.
Eto’o is the leading all-time scorer in the Nations Cup with 18 goals and he appeared at four World Cup finals – 1998, 2002, 2010 and 2014 – playing in eight matches and scoring three goals.
After five years at Barca, he joined Inter Milan in 2009 where he won the coveted European crown for a third time – this time under the guidance of Jose Mourinho.
Short spells in the Premier League soon followed, with Chelsea and Everton among the 13 professional teams Eto’o has represented during his memorable playing career.
But in a short Instagram message on Friday night, the Cameroon legend announced that he has decided to call time on his career after leaving Qatar SC earlier this year.
“The End. Towards a new challenge. Thank you all, big love.”
Not only did the striker enjoy a memorable club career, but he also starred for his country and is strongly regarded as one of the greatest strikers of all-time.
Eto’o was voted African Player of the Year four times, a joint-record he holds with former Manchester City midfielder Yaya Toure.