By Beng Emmanuel
Sports Writer, Kick442.com-Cameroon
Cameroon record top scorer, Samuel Eto’o is convinced Africa can end their 25 years wait for triumph and produce a Ballon d’Or winner if they ‘believe in the players of the continent.”
The former Barcelona and Inter Milan potent finisher failed to win the global recognition once despite an illustrious career at both international and club level.
Liberia’s current president, George Weah is the only player on the continent to have won the award in 1995.
Since then, no African player has been privileged to achieve similar exploit despite coming close.
Eto’o, 39, believes the fate of Africans hugely lies within themselves should they envisage to end the 25 years wait. The retired professional footballer has also noted the continent’s votes can play a huge part to enable these players achieve success.
“Some Africans who do not believe in the players of their continent, and this only happens in Africa,” Eto’o told AS, Kick442.com gathered from Goal.com.
“When we see players having a good season or not, they automatically win the votes of the continent to which they belong. We can make a difference in our continent, thinking carefully about what comes to us from abroad or that which is imposed on us”
“When you watch the matches of the leagues on foreign channels, you find that players are sold from other places and it is repeated that they are the best, and thus our journalists are convinced, despite the fact that the results are seen by everyone.”
Senegal’s skipper, Sadio Mané was close to winning the previous edition. He finished fourth in the race for the award last year. The Liverpool Striker who ended top scorer of the English Premier League alongside Mohamed Salah and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was tipped to win after having a productive season in England.
Samuel Eto’o hasn’t been different to the idea but ponders why the UEFA Champions League winner did not achieve the obvious.
“But despite the fact that everything, in recent years emerging players like Sadio Mane has stood out. Someone who made an amazing difference, won almost all the titles, scored goals in all tournaments, but the result was that he did not win the Balon d’Or. Why?
“Because of those people who vote thinking that the best has a different meaning, and that he may have to be of descent from another place that is not our continent. That’s why on many occasions we lost.”
Samuel Eto’o scored an impressive 56 goals for Cameroon before his retirement from football in September 2019.
The record four times African Player of the Year inspired Cameroon achieve back-to-back African Cup of Nation titles in 2000 and 2002. He was also among the team which won gold at the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000.
He won three UEFA Champions League trophies, including three La Liga titles with Barcelona, and a Serie A triumph at Inter.
The Cameroonian legend is regarded as one of the greatest African players of all time.
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