Four time African footballer of the year Samuel Eto who recently retired from playing football has decried the treatment of African footballers in the global scene despite their achievements.
Barcelona and Inter Legend who spoke on the Ballon d’ Or and its possible winner explained that though Liverpool’s duo Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, and Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had an amazing 2018-19 season, might not be winning the award after finished as joint top scorers with 22 goals each..
Samuel Eto’o decrying the lack of respect given to African stars on the global scene despite their achievements, further lamented the manner at which Africans bring themselves down.
“We are only good to denigrate our own brothers. We are not respected,” Eto’o told RFI.
Although Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have dominated the individual award in past years with five awards each and still stand as favourites for the prize, Eto’o cited Liverpool’s Champions League triumph as a major advantage for the African duo in Jurgen Klopp’s team but does not see it happening.
“It’s a fact. I hope I’m wrong, but the next Ballon d’Or will be neither Mane nor Salah.
“There is no explanation that Mane, Salah or Aubameyang, the top three scorers of the Premier League last season may not even be among the top five.
“Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are both very strong, but this season who won the Champions League? It’s Mane and Salah,” Eto said.
Eto’o is widely regarded as an icon of African football and holds several records on the continent including the most goals scored at the Africa Cup of Nations with a total of 18 efforts across six tournaments.
Despite the titles won and the plethora of goals scored in his 22-year career, the 38-year-old did not win the Ballon d’Or