I think it’s fair to say that any hope of Cameroon making it out of the group stages at this year’s World Cup in South Africa likely rests on the shoulders of Mr. Samuel Eto’o.
The 29-year-old captain is fresh off his second consecutive Champions League win (and third overall) and will really need to be on his game to give his nation a shot when things get underway on June 11th. It’s for that very reason that Cameroon as a whole should stand as one with the Inter striker right now and tell former Cameroonian star Roger Milla to “shut up.”
On Monday I was talking about distractions – well here’s another:
Milla, who is famous for scoring four goals in five games as a 38-year-old at the 1990 World Cup in Italy, has decided to start criticizing Eto’o right before the start of the tournament for not doing as much for his country as he has for his club.
Here’s the thing – he’s wrong.
First of all, Cameroon’s national team is no Barcelona or Inter Milan. It’s true, at the club level Eto’o has no shortage of hardware, but he also boasts a very decorated international career.
For example: he's the African Cup of Nations all-time leading scorer, with two tournament wins to his name, and he also helped lead Cameroon to Olympic gold at the 2000 Summer Games. To recap: Eto’o has been involved in half of his country’s African Cup titles and the country’s only Olympic medal win.
So when Milla says Eto’o “hasn’t brought anything to [the] national team,” you could say he’s forgetting a couple of small details. Do you need any more convincing that this is a bad strategy on the eve of the biggest international tournament there is?
How about this: Because of all this trash talk from Milla, Eto’o says he’s now questioning whether or not he should even play for his country at the World Cup, which would be a devastating loss.
Could it be that the current Cameroon captain’s achievements are starting to overshadow those of the former national hero and he’s a bit jealous? That’s how it looks to me.
It’d be a shame if that jealousy cost them their shot at this year’s tournament.