African football legend Samuel Eto’o says he’s not ready to retire

Samuel Eto'o eyes the ball during a training session at the Dunas Arena soccer stadium in Natal, June 12, 2014. REUTERS/Toru Hanai

Four-time African footballer of the year, Samuel Eto’o, says he is not quitting football once his contract at Qatar Sports Club expires this summer.

Samuel Eto’o arrives ahead of the draw. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin/File Photo

The 37-year-old moved to the Qatari top-flight club in August after leaving Turkey by mutual consent, but has been restricted to a goal in two appearances due to injury.

Eto’o, who is currently on a promotional tour in South Africa, says he still has plans to stay and play on in the Qatari league.

“At my age I prefer to stay in Qatar. I am grateful that they have given me an opportunity to play while I am also planning my education project,” Eto’o said.

“I think I will go another year and then see after that, I will not look too far ahead.

“I have always said I will be the first to stop playing once I cannot give my best.

“Football means a lot but when it’s not normal for me to do it to my best ability, then I stop.”

He had a short spell in English football with Chelsea and Everton prior to stints in Turkey at Antalyaspor and Konyaspor, before swapping Europe for the Middle East.

Eto’o, who had previously played in Spain, Russia and Italy, enjoyed much of his club success at Barcelona, where he played from 2004 to 2009.

His trophies there included three La Liga crowns, alongside former Brazil forward Ronaldinho, and two Champions League titles.

He also won the Champions League, under Jose Mourinho, at Inter Milan in 2010, and has an Olympic gold medal, which he won with Cameroon in 2000.

Eto’o is the leading all-time scorer in the Nations Cup with 18 goals and he appeared at four World Cup finals – 1998, 2002, 2010 and 2014 – playing in eight matches and scoring three goals.

Cameroon’s all-time leading scorer with 54-goals, won back-to-back Africa Cup of Nations titles with his country at the 2000 and 2002 editions.