Eto'o: I nearly joined Arsenal

Chelsea's new signing Samuel Eto'o says he almost signed for Arsenal in 2000, but has no regrets over turning them down.

Last Updated: 14/09/13 at 12:13 Post Comment

Samuel Eto'o: Set to make Chelsea debut on Saturday

Samuel Eto'o: Set to make Chelsea debut on Saturday

Bet £10 Get £30

Daily Offers And Promotions. Join Now & Bet £10 and Get a £30 Free Bet

Eto'o was looking to leave Real Madrid at the time after failing to get enough chances to impress at the Bernabeu, and had already been loaned out to Leganes and Espanyol.

The Cameroon international was still just a teenager, but then Mallorca boss Luis Aragones showed faith in the young striker and managed to lure him to Son Moix just when Arsene Wenger was poised to snap him up instead.

"I met Luis at a crucial moment in my life where I had to take the right direction - and thanks to him I did," Eto'o told The Sun.

"I was about to sign that very afternoon at Arsenal and maybe I would have never been the player I am today.

"Luis picked me, then I ended up joining Barcelona. That decision changed everything."

Eto'o initially signed for Mallorca on loan and after scoring six goals in 19 La Liga appearances, he made a permanent club-record £4.4million switch in the summer of 2000.

After winning the Copa del Rey in 2003, he signed for Barcelona the following year and landed two Champions League titles with the Catalan club before repeating the achievement with his next club Inter Milan.

The four-time African Player of the Year now finds himself in the Chelsea ranks after his summer switch from Anzhi Makhachkala and is set to make his debut in the Saturday Night Football encounter at Everton in the Premier League.

Eto'o added: "I had lots of opportunities to come to England, but I am glad to finally be here now."

The 32-year-old has previously admitted that he did not always see eye to eye with Jose Mourinho during their time together with Inter, but says the attraction of working with the Portuguese boss again brought home to west London.

Eto'o told Sky Sports News: "After all that's happened in Russia over the last couple of months, I had a few proposals from European clubs - but none of them had Jose Mourinho.

"It was an opportunity for me to team up with him again, and have the opportunity to continue working with him like I did at Inter Milan. And that is the reason I am here."

Bet £10 Get £30

Daily Offers And Promotions. Join Now & Bet £10 and Get a £30 Free Bet

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

Y

es, these stats are right. Rio Ferdinand definitely had a better debut than Fernando.

that man
Top Ten Debutants From Opening Weekend...

I

know it's only one game, and Arsenal have got an amazing midfield as is; but seriously, is Arsene Wenger the only person on Earth who doesn't want Cesc at their club?

Ezy_Rider
Top Ten Debutants From Opening Weekend...

P

S - 'Squeezes [English] out of his mouth like it's an elastic band he's found in his lamb bhuna' - bravo. Marvellous stuff

Ezy_Rider
Football Managers On TV: Paul Lambert

Footer 365

Roy Hodgson says England youngsters should try their luck overseas in future

Roy Hodgson feels future generations of England stars would benefit from going overseas rather than being bit-part players at home.

Transfer news: Jordan Rhodes subject of transfer bid from Hull City

Blackburn boss Gary Bowyer has revealed Hull City have made a bid for the club's prolific striker Jordan Rhodes.

Crystal Palace interested in Chelsea's international head coach Dermot Drummy

Crystal Palace have contacted Chelsea's international head coach Dermot Drummy as they continue to search for a new manager, Sky sources understand.

Mail Box

Man United Fans Clutching At Straws

While the focus is on Liverpool's move for Mario Balotelli, one Man United fan tries to convince the mailbox with nine reasons why Angel Di Maria would prefer them to PSG...

Rojo Is A Better Signing Than Hummels

There's some big talk in the morning mailbox, which claims that Man United were right to sign Marcos Rojo instead of Mats Hummels. Plus, one Gooner's happy Arteta's out...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property