Eto’o to seal Chelsea move as striker agrees £10m-a-year pay cut to rejoin Mourinho.


Chelsea will sign Samuel Eto’o on a stunning £7million one-year deal on Thursday after admitting defeat in their pursuit of Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney.

Eto’o, the 32-year-old Cameroon forward, is taking a huge pay cut from the £17m a year that made him the world’s best paid footballer at Anzhi Makhachkala and will sign on a free transfer.

However, Anzhi are understood to have sweetened the deal by giving Eto’o a multi-million-pound lump sum to get him off their wage bill.

He arrived at London’s St Pancras station on Wednesday night, where he was pictured with super-agent Pini Zahavi, and is due to have a medical at Chelsea’s Cobham training ground before finalising terms after his advisers held talks.

Scroll down for video of Eto’o in action for Anzhi

Full steam ahead: Samuel Eto'o arrived at St Pancras station on Wednesday night ahead of his move to Chelsea
Eto'o in a Chelsea shirt (as imagined by Sportsmail)

Done deal: Chelsea will confirm the signing of Samuel Eto’o as Jose Mourinho ends his search for a striker


Eto'o with Pini Zahavi
Chelsea bound: Cameroon striker Eto'o arrives at St Pancras

Seal the deal: Eto’o shakes hands with Pini Zahavi (left picture) and strides towards his car (right)


Whisked away: Eto'o leaves St Pancras after arriving in London
Whisked away: Eto'o leaves St Pancras after arriving in London

Whisked away: Eto’o, who is set to take a huge pay cut to join Chelsea, leaves St Pancras on Wednesday night

Solution? Samuel Eto'o will seal his move to Chelsea as Jose Mourinho ends his striker search

Solution? Samuel Eto’o will seal his move to Chelsea as Jose Mourinho ended his striker search

Top target: Mourinho didn't select any strikers at Old Trafford and is known to be chasing Wayne Rooney

Target: Mourinho didn’t select any strikers at Old Trafford and the chase for Wayne Rooney seems to be over


Chelsea have dabbled before with veteran forwards — and seen very mixed results . . .


George Weah

Africa’s greatest ever player arrived in 2000 from AC Milan, aged 33. He was rarely given a chance under Gianluca Vialli, despite scoring on his debut against Spurs.




Gianfranco Zola

Came to London in 1996 at 30 years old and was a revelation. Turned out 312 times, scoring 80 goals, and earned the Bridge’s eternal respect.




Gianluca Vialli

The 32-year-old rejected Rangers to sign for Ruud Gullit in 1996. It was £600,000 well spent. Vialli netted 40 goals in 78 games, then proved a successful manager.




Pop Robson

The Newcastle and West Ham legend joined Chelsea aged 36 in 1982. He scored on his debut, but added just two more goals as he combined playing with coaching.




Andriy Shevchenko

Milan mourned when Sheva left ahead of his 30th birthday for £30.8m. But Chelsea fans were soon feeling depressed too as the Ukrainian laboured to 22 goals in three miserable seasons.



Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho, a confirmed Eto’o admirer, turned to his Plan B after United refused to sell Rooney.

Indeed, the England striker’s immediate future at Old Trafford looks assured after he took to his Facebook page to voice appreciation of the support he received from United fans during his outstanding performance in Monday night’s goalless draw between the sides.

Rooney posted: ‘It was an unbelievable reaction from the fans, so thank you. I really appreciate your support. It means a lot.’

Mourinho may try again for Rooney later in the season, but for now he is content with Eto’o, about whom he once said: ‘Any coach would be stupid not to want to have a striker like him.’

There is a kinship between the Chelsea coach and his new signing.

Eto’o has never been short of an opinion. At Barcelona he took a microphone on live television and called his former club Real Madrid ‘b*****ds’ to celebrate Barcelona’s 2005 Spanish title; he dared to publicly attack Ronaldinho’s work-rate and justifiably threatened to leave the field when racially abused from the stands in Zaragoza.

It is no surprise that his first exchange with Mourinho was a heated one.

In the tunnel at Stamford Bridge in 2005 when Chelsea beat Barcelona in the Champions League, a melee followed between players, and Eto’o was vocal in his opinion of Chelsea’s tactics. Mourinho liked the striker’s feistiness.

‘I liked the fact he was worked up after a defeat,’ recalled the Portuguese.


Reunion: Eto'o and Mourinho won the treble at Inter Milan in 2010

Reunion: Eto’o and Mourinho won the treble at Inter Milan in 2010



That fire was put to good use when the two joined forces at Inter Milan where Eto’o was the spearhead for Mourinho’s Treble-winning side. During that time, the four-time African Player of the Year scored a winner at Stamford Bridge to end Chelsea’s Champions League hopes.

Silky of touch, dedicated and clinical, Eto’o is also one to nurture the young players around him, a factor that will not be lost on his coach.

Questions will be asked whether he has the pace which made him such a feared opponent in Italy and Spain and there was evidence in Russia and the Europa League last year that his power is dwindling with age.

However, his speed of thought and relationship with Chelsea’s other Anzhi recruit, the Brazilian Willian, still spawned a goal ratio of one every two games. It is a gamble Mourinho is prepared to take and one appreciated by Eto’o.

‘There is only one Jose Mourinho,’ Eto’o once said about his former manager. ‘I have played under a lot of great coaches but there is no other character in the game like Jose.

defeat: The signing effectively kills any hope Mourinho had of signing United striker Rooney

Defeat: The signing effectively kills any hope Mourinho had of signing United striker Rooney

Writing's on the wall: Wayne Rooney took to Facebook to thank Old Trafford fans on Monday night

Writing’s on the wall: Wayne Rooney took to Facebook to thank Old Trafford fans against Chelsea

‘I would like to have the chance to play under him again because it is never boring when Jose is around.’ Eto’o’s arrival comes as a further blow to the three strikers already at Stamford Bridge.

Fernando Torres and Romelu Lukaku were on the bench at Old Trafford on Monday night and Demba Ba, wanted back at Newcastle by Alan Pardew, was not even in the squad.

The arrivals of Willian and Eto’o will not signal the end of Chelsea’s spending. The club are in talks with Porto for Christian Atsu, a £4m-rated winger also wanted by Cardiff, Tottenham and Liverpool. But the 21-year-old Ghana flyer is concerned he will get little playing time among Chelsea’s galaxy of attacking stars.

If they do sign Atsu ahead of free-spending Spurs, it will be a second triumph over Andre Villas-Boas this summer, following Willian.




All in blue: The Brazilian will wear the No 22 shirt

All smiles: Brazilian playmaker Willian revealed his delight at completing his move to Stamford Bridge

Willian at Chelsea

The forward completed his £32m move to Stamford Bridge on Wednesday after a successful work permit hearing.

Last week he had seemed to be on the verge of a move to White Hart Lane and even had a medical before a late move from Chelsea prised him away from Tottenham.

Mourinho gave evidence on the 25-year-old’s behalf to convince the Home Office to grant him a work permit.

Another new face: Chelsea are also in talks to sign Porto's Ghanian winger Christian Atsu

Another new face: Chelsea are also in talks to sign Porto’s Ghanian winger Christian Atsu

A delighted Willian said: ‘It’s going to be an immense pleasure to work with Jose Mourinho, to listen to him and learn from him. He’s one of the best coaches in the world with everything he’s won. I’m sure I’m going to learn a lot and improve a lot.

‘My style is that I like to dribble a lot and play with speed. I like to accelerate very fast with the ball. I’m also quite technical and like to shoot at goal.

‘When the offer came I never gave a thought to anybody else, I said to myself that I would run here, and I’m happy to be here now. Chelsea was always my first choice.’




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He has got to be the most un loyal,greedy,mercenary footballer on the planet

– Sheffield Owl , SHEFFIELD, 29/8/2013 16:10

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Eto is world class. Only a fool would think any less of a player that has led the line for three champions league winning trophies. I think it’s good business especially working on a one year deal, this is a proven striker that still scores goals. I am looking forward to adding his cutting edge to the team. Gotta love all those haters. I think man shu have signed umm… No one hahaha. Jose knows what the striker offers and there is no doubt in his ability.

– cfcprotocol , london, 29/8/2013 15:55

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this remind me toward poor drogba who were sold after he succeed to help chelsit to win UCL for a reason he was too old for striker role . seems unfair though

– Neng Yatimah , Glasgow, Malaysia,29/8/2013 15:21

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Being from Dublin leaves any doubt about who one supports

– quesera , Wiltshire, 29/8/2013 15:05

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Should be arrested for not wearing a seat belt 🙂

– Caston Matewu , Portsmouth, United Kingdom, 29/8/2013 14:56

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Well unfortunatley i dont think Torress will leave that easy because of some reason. If he was gona leave, Jose would have said so ages ago. Maybe its becos of hes experience or Roman dont want hes 50 million man to be for waste, but what i know is that he wouldnt be leaving.

– Rhieme , Swansea, United Kingdom,29/8/2013 14:50

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Why do all the players photographed look like they buy their clothes from a charity shop?

– JohnS , Warsaw, United Kingdom,29/8/2013 14:47

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Am a man utd fan, I can strongly bet that at the end of the season, this is going to be signing of the season. Those dismissing Eto are clearly misguided as he is one of the most lethal finishers around. With the kind of midfield at Chelsea, this guy is going to be tearing teams apart in no time. No matter how much you hate Mourinho, you gotta admit, this guy knows how to buy and build a team. That said, with kind of shambolic transfer activities happening at man utd and Arsenal, Chelsea is going to run away with this title with the least resistance. – raysing , berea, United States, 29/8/2013 14:03 You spell Utd in lower case, Chelsea in upper case and rave about Chelsea, you sure you’re a Utd fan because you sure don’t sound like one.

– aidan , Dublin Ireland, 29/8/2013 14:44

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At least they didnt do their usual Frank Lampard copy and paste! =====quote==== that picture of eto’o in a chelsea uniform looks strangely like the build of ramires – Julian Brown , ARLINGTON, United States, 29/8/2013 11:54

– DoubleDoom , Norwich, 29/8/2013 14:41

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Chelsea signs another mercenary. FAIL

– M2 , Col, United States, 29/8/2013 14:40

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