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How Good Is: Chelsea New Boy Samuel Eto'o

Posted on Aug 30th, 2013 by Araz Heydariyehzadeh

Chelsea's signing of Samuel Eto'o yesterday raised a few eyebrows and may well have put an end to their pursuit of Wayne Rooney, but is Eto'o as good as his big billing and salary suggests?

Eto'o: World Top 20 Attacker
Having spent 5 glorious seasons at Barcelona and a further 2 under Mourinho at Inter Milan, Eto'o is pretty much a house hold name, if not for his reputation as one of the best strikers in the world then at least for his world record salary at his last club Anzhi, which was believed to be in excess of £250k per week. So have Chelsea banked them selves a gem or is Eto'o past it at 32?

When it comes to scoring goals consistently over a huge period of time there are few who can compare to this man's goal scoring talents. All of his 14 seasons as a pro have been spent in top leagues where he has maintained a record of a goal contributed for every 118 minutes of game time.

Eto'o's record is better than the 136 minutes achieved by Soldado. Wayne Rooney clocks it at a marginally better 116 with Van Persie a shade better than that at 102 minutes. On this basis Eto'o is a top 20 striker based on his career record.

Even at Anzhi he maintained a goal for every 121 minutes of game time. The Russian league is considered a tough place these days and even if it's not quite as well regarded as the Italian or Spanish leagues there is little sign that the great Cameroonian is slowing down.

Club Record
Eto'o's club record is even better than his over all career numbers coming in at a goal contributed for every 111 minutes of game time. Only a handful of players outside of Ronaldo and Messi can get under the 100 minute mark so the new Chelsea man's record is truly remarkable as one of the finest in the world, done at the very top level throughout a long and distinguished career. You'd need a museum to house all the trophies he's won, including being the only player ever to win consecutive trebles with two different clubs.

MPGC: 111mins

Champions League
Eto'o has won the Champions League 4 times, with 3 different clubs, more than any other player still active today. His 69 appearances in the competition have produced 27 goals (making him the 15th highest scorer ever in the competition) as well as 17 assists giving him a goal contributed for every 126 minutes of game time. There is no question what so ever that his world class ability stretches to the very highest echelons of the game.

MPGC: 125 mins

Eto'o is amongst an illustrious list of about only 300 footballers who have exceeded 100 international caps. His 112 appearances for Cameroon have seen him appear at 3 world cup finals and produced 55 goals. His assist numbers are difficult to come by but they are believed to be in the region of 10, giving him a goal contributed for every 137 minutes of game time. An absolutely astonishing record to maintain over such a large volume of caps.

MPGC: 137 mins

Our Rating
It was only Eto'o's age and his 2 years spent in the relative wilderness of Russia that raised any possible question marks over his cast iron place amongst the world's top 20 strikers. We have seen nothing that warrants an omission of his rightful place amongst not just the greatest that have ever played football, but also the greatest still playing today, rated on current merit.

His remarkable stats at every level possible make him a stick on for the world top 20 strikers. With Mourinho having protected Chelsea against any sudden decline in the player's ability by giving him only a 1 year contract this could be yet another cunning piece of business for the Chelsea manager. We look forward to seeing the great man in the Premier League.

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