Goalscoring Eto’o Thrives Under Benitez
Eto’o has always been known as one of the world’s deadliest forwards, a player with speed, intelligence, and pinpoint finishing. His statistics are incredible, with great goalscoring records at club and international level. But this past season where he won the treble with Inter Milan was a severe drop for him in goalscoring terms. Jose Mourinho made him play as a fullback, not as a forward, sacrificing the Cameroon’s goalscoring ability. But this season, Eto’o is blooming once again, Rafa Benitez promised to play Eto’o as a forward, and the player is returning the favour with goals.
You can’t really argue against Eto’o's record, in his club career he has won 14 trophies, among those are four Champions League winners medals. He has also won two African Cup of Nations with his national side, along with an Olympic Gold medal in 2000. And along with all these team awards, Samuel Eto’o has also received a plethora of individual awards. While winning all these trophies and awards, Eto’o has constantly scored goals.
Samuel Eto’o is probably best known for scoring 36 goals in Barcelona’s spectacular 2008-2009 season, where the blaugrana won the treble. And throughout his Barca days, Eto’o scored 130 goals in 200 appearances, a truly fantastic record. But if you were to compare his final season at Barcelona, to his first season at Inter Milan, you’ll see a colossal drop in the amount of goals. Eto’o only scored 16 goals in all competitions his first season at Inter Milan, where he won his second treble.
He sacrificed himself for the team, playing a very defensive role as he covered large areas of the field with his stamina. But this season Rafael Benitez has decided to use Eto’o in a different way, where he’ll hopefully get a few more goals out of him. Already, Benitez is seeing an improvement from Eto’o: in all competitions, six appearances, six goals.
But this individual improvement from Eto’o has cost another player’s form. Diego Milito is a shadow of his former self, and while Eto’o is scoring goals, Milito has yet to score one. While last season the Argentine secured all three trophies for Inter Milan with his goals, this season he is having difficulty being a threat to opposing goalkeepers.
And so the question arises, is it better to have Eto’o scoring goals while Milito suffers? Or is it better to play Eto’o more defensively while Milito scores the goals? While I believe that it’s better for the team to have Eto’o scoring goals at the expense of Milito’s form, I’d like to know what you think. Share your thoughts by commenting below!