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|Eto’o won the Golden Boot in the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations with five goals [AFP]|
With just one week until the Africa Cup of Nations in Angola, Cameroon striker Samuel Eto’o is setting his sights on the individual goal record at a single Nations Cup finals.
Eto’o, who plays for Italy’s Inter Milan, will captain the Indomitable Lions in Angola and also at the World Cup in South Africa in June.
He already holds the record as the highest overall goal scorer with 16 goals at the tournament.
Congolese Mulamba Ndaye’s nine goals for then-Zaire in Egypt in 1974 is the highest by a player at one tournament.
Ivorian Laurent Pokou grabbed eight goals in Sudan in 1970 while Egyptian Hossam Hassan and South African Benni McCarthy netted seven in Burkina Faso in 1998.
“I would like to take Cameroon as far as possible, to even win the tournament,” the 29-year-old player told news agency Reuters in an interview in the Kenyan capital Nairobi.
“But my first objective will be to score the highest number of goals at a single Nations Cup,” added the triple African Footballer of the Year.
Cameroon begin their Group D campaign against Gabon on January 13. They take on Zambia four days later before meeting Tunisia on January 21.
“Although we have a pretty good team (this year) all the teams are equal and have a chance of winning,” said Eto’o who lifted the Nations Cup in 2000 and 2002.
“I don’t want to make any predictions.”
|The Inter star believes Cameroon have a good chance of winning the tournament [AFP]|
Eto’o, who joined Inter from Barcelona in July in a swap with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, won the Golden Boot as top scorer for the second consecutive Nations Cup when he notched five goals in Ghana in 2008.
That year Cameroon lost to Egypt in the final. He also hit five goals in Egypt in 2006.
Eto’o missed Inter’s Serie A game against Chievo after Cameroon turned down the club’s request to delay his Nations Cup departure.
He spoke out in support of European teams who paid big wages and had a right to demand the services of their players.
But, he added, the Nations Cup could not change dates to fit the seasons of European teams.
“Just as they play their European Cup of Nations every four years in the summer because it is convenient for them, the African Nations Cup must be played in January because it is convenient for us as there is less rain all over the continent,” said Eto’o.