By Muambo Edward
Football Writer, kick442.com – Cameroon
Samuel Eto’o Fils is without any doubt the greatest African player to have graced the Spanish football pitches, with three UEFA Champions League crowns with Real Madrid  and FC Barcelona[2005 and 2009] as well as three Spanish LaLiga titles with FC Barcelona.
He scored 108 of his 162 goals in the Spanish top flight with the Blaugrana and gave a chance to over a dozen young Cameroonians through his Foundation [Fundesport], like Macky Bagnack, Gaël Etok, Fabrice Ondoa, Andre Onana, Fabrice Olinga and many others to learn their trade in Barcelona’s precious La Masia Academy.
But other Cameroonians like Franck Songo’o had found their way into the Barca set up without his help. The earliest to have done so is a certain Patrick Suffo-Kengné, who did so seven years before Eto’o joint Barcelona, although he never made it to their first team.
Aged 42 today, Suffo joint FC Barcelona’s B team in 1996. The FC Nantes and Tonnerre of Yaoundé youth product was loaned out to Barca’s B team in 1996.
Patrick Suffo joined TKC in the build up to the 1991 season.
He came from the popular Brasseries Football Academy just after Rigobert Song.
He was a part of the TKC team with Song in the 1992/1993 season and both won the only Junior Cameroon cup trophy for TKC.
He was promoted to the TKC first team in 1993/1994 season under coach Ndongo Keller who was in charge of the Under 20 team of Cameroon. He made his senior debut against Union Sportive of Douala in Yaounde that season.
He left for Nantes at the end of the 1994 season. He was scouted at the Montagui Tournament alongside Salomon Olembe.
The same tournament from which FC Metz spotted Rigobert Song.
He spent a year at Nantes couldn’t break into their first team, so Barca who were keen on heavily built Cameroon forward after watching him during the international youth tournament in France, came calling for his services and a loan deal was agreed.
He returned to Nantes after a year in Spain and helped Nantes to a French Cup triumph in 1999 alongside Salomon Olembe.
Suffo moved to England to sign to Sheffield United in the year 2000. The English expedition did not go according to plan as the Cameroon forward struggled for play time and had a fallout with then Manager, Neil Warnock, who reproached him of preferring to play for Indomitable Lions of Cameroon rather than fight for his place with the club. He however managed 36 league appearances, scoring 5 goals in two seasons.
He then moved back to Spain to join Spanish second tier strugglers Numancia in 2002. The Cameroonian had more playing time, with six goals in 23 league appearances in the 2002-2003 season, but that was not enough to help the team beat relegation to the third tier of Spanish football.
He then moved to the Gulf State of Saudi Arabia where he signed for Al Hilal Riyad, but in May 2003 his contract was terminated with his teammate Andrei Kantchelskis.
He moved back to England, where he spent a-year-and-a-half with Coventry City, scoring 10 league goals in 48 appearances, before returning to the Middle East to a join a Dubai club.
After another brief stay in the Middle East, the native of Ebolowa returned to Europe and signed for Norwegian top flight side ODD Greenland which he helped avoid relegation.
He was then rumoured to be on the verge of a move to Norwegian giants Valerenga IF, but the move failed to materialize. That was followed by an unsuccessful trial with then English third tier side Walsall FC in 2006.
He opted to move to Israel and signed for top flight outfit Maccabi Petah-Tikva which he helped to a fifth place finish in the Israeli League in the 2005-2006 season and qualified for the 2006 UEFA Intertoto Cup. From there he had a brief spell with MS Ashdod another Israeli club, featuring in just one league game, before returning to Spain to join UD Puertollano in 2008.
Spells with Wrexham in the 2008-2009 season, then Coventry Alvis in 2009 and Bedworth Liberal followed. He finally dusted his playing boots in 2012 while playing for Coventry United.
Suffo was part of the Cameroon team that won the Summer Olympics Gold Medal in Sydney, beating Ronaldinho’s Brazil and Xavi’s Spain on their way to glory.
With the senior national team of Cameroon, he earned 29 caps from 1997 to 2003, scoring 4 goals, notably against Argentina in 2002 World Cup build up friendly. He was part of Cameroon’s 2002 AFCON winning team and made it to Korea/Japan with the Indomitable Lions for the 2002 FIFA World Cups.
Copyright 2020 © kick442.com
This material and any other digital content on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcasted, written in full or in parts, without a written permission from our management.
This site is not responsible for the content displayed by external sites.