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Samuel Eto'o exclusive: Sign for a team from England? Why would I quit the best?

There would appear to be no shortage of confidence at Barcelona if the views expressed by Samuel Eto’o are anything to go by.

He thinks the side that he spearheads against Chelsea in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final on Tuesday are pretty damn fantastic.

Good enough to end English dominance in Europe and far too good to trade for a Premier League club.

‘I have no intention of leaving the best club in the world,’ he informs Manchester City and any other potential pursuers.

'He does like to make grand statements, as he demonstrated again this week when he reflected on Barcelona’s 4-0 demolition of Sevilla. Andres Iniesta, he declares,
‘is the best player in the world; whenever Iniesta is on the pitch he creates a spectacle’.

But what of the player now widely considered the most creative of all? What of Lionel Messi?

‘I am convinced he will not go down as one of the best players of his generation, but as one of the best who has ever lived,’ says the 28-year-old Cameroonian.

‘People will still be talking about him in 50 years, saying, “I once saw Messi play”, and that “He was the greatest player I have ever seen”. Of that I am sure.

‘Some of the things you see him do in training and on the pitch just make you stand back and wonder how it is possible. But he does not conduct himself as if he is the best player in the world.

'He is very humble and just wants to play football, and maybe even he gets a little bit shy when people say such great things about him.’

A veiled swipe at Cristiano Ronaldo? It would seem so. But he is more respectful of the English teams who have progressed to the last four of the Champions League, even if he has a message for them.

‘I don’t think there is much doubt over the last two or three years the power of European football has been in England,’ he says.

‘But for me that is not strange. The power shifts every few years to one of the major leagues in Europe, and this is England’s turn.

'We have seen Juventus and Milan dominate, then us and Madrid, so it is no shock for me that now it is England’s turn. It will not last for ever, though. These things shift to another country.

‘But all of the English clubs left in the competition have players who are capable of winning matches against any team in the world. Manchester United, Chelsea and
Arsenal all have players who would have a chance of making any team in the world, that is why English clubs have done so well.

‘We are all aware of Manchester United. Like us, they are a great team and they will be looking to prove themselves No 1 in Europe again this season, much like we will
be. Chelsea are very organised and a very tough team to play. They have a great work attitude and you know to expect a very tough game.

‘Arsenal are very young, and maybe the least experienced, but when things go right for them they are one of the best teams in Europe to watch and are similar to us in that respect. Every team left will have the belief they can win the European Cup this season.’

But Eto’o is firmly committed to winning with Barca. ‘Let me ask you something,’ he says. ‘If you were playing in this Barcelona team the way it is playing, would you want to leave for anywhere else in the world?

‘If you think about that question logically you will get your answer. But just to be clear, I have no intention of leaving.

‘For me, we have the best attacking force in world football. It is an honour to play in this team with so much talent. I have been very pleased with my own scoring form this season, but it remains that I could not reach the levels I do without so much talent around me.

‘The service I get is exceptional and we play with no fear. Some of the players in Barcelona’s attack will go down in football history and sometimes you need to take a
minute and have a think about just how special this team is.

‘Look at Xavi. This is somebody who just makes the team work. He is like the part of the machine that just makes everything come together. He is considered one of the best central midfield players in Europe and that is quite right, because he really is that good.

‘You will not meet many more passionate men in the world. Some people win, but some are winners. He doesn’t have another option apart from “win” in his brain.’

Playing alongside Messi and Thierry Henry does seem to work for Eto’o, his 27 goals in 30 league games this season helping Barca establish a six-point lead over Real
Madrid, who they meet between the two legs of their tie with Chelsea.

Weaknesses, however, have been identified in Barcelona’s defence. Gerard Pique was not considered good enough for Manchester United, but he has started nine of the 10 Champions League games Barcelona have so far contested this season.

Ten games that might have seen them score 29 goals but also concede 12, keeping a clean sheet just twice. No matter, says Eto’o. Barcelona have also scored 92 goals in 32 league games and, under the guidance of Josep Guardiola, have developed an approach that convinces them they will simply outscore their opponents.

‘You only have to look at what Frank Rijkaard achieved during his time here to see he is a top coach,’ says Eto’o. ‘But under Pep we are playing with more attacking freedom. You only have to look at the amount of goals we have scored this season to see what freedom we are playing with.

‘When you attack like we do, there is the argument you leave yourself open, but we seem to be doing pretty well with it so far.

‘We believe we have the ability to win the European Cup, but at the same time we understand how hard it will be. The English teams are all very strong, and they will make things very difficult for us. We will approach every game giving the teams respect, but at the same time believing we will have victory if we perform well.’

And he clearly believes they will perform well at the Nou Camp next week.

Credit to DAilyMail

This is the only way for Ronaldo to really2 pleased ManUtd fan & show that he's really2 happy with ManUtd and keep his loyalty to ManUtd FC..When he came here in London, he's just a potential player to became a world great, and now his dream came true and became one of the world greatest footballer ever, and i'm sure that his wardrobe are full of trophies credit to himself, ManUtd and Co..What he need to say is Just Like How Eto'o Does..........

Why should I leave ManUtd for Real Madrid, ManUtd made me a world great, and I should pay on what that they've done to me....


· Moderator
26,045 Posts
He must have said at least 4 times this season already about staying.

In fact, he already said something along what Eto'o said, that he is here to win trophies and this is the best place to win trophies in his latest confession about one or 2 weeks ago? No?

· Registered
3,058 Posts
This really is getting boring now about the Ronaldo saga and starting to piss me off..!:rolleyes:

This will continue for months now, every week a new story and new quotes.. Can't we all just ignore this now and stop posting up these stories, because we'll hear enough of it all summer..!
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