Samuel Eto’o: ‘I made Barcelona win not Messi’

Eto’o spent five years at Barcelona from 2004-09, with Guardiola in charge of the Catalan giants in the Cameroonian’s final season of 2008/09.

The striker had scored 94 goals in 147 games for Barça in the four seasons before Guardiola’s arrival, then scored 36 in 52 matches for the current Manchester City manager’s debut season at Barcelona.

Barcelona won a La Liga-Champions League double in 2008/09, but with a young Lionel Messi assuming greater influence in the first team, Eto’o was sold to Inter Milan as part of the deal that brought Zlatan Ibrahimovic to the Camp Nou.

Eto’o believes Guardiola treated him poorly and suggests he was the true driver behind their dominant campaign, not Messi.

“Pep has lived his whole life in Barcelona, but in the years I spent in Barça, he didn’t understand the team,” Eto’o told beIN SPORTS. “He didn’t live the life of our team.

“I said to Guardiola, ‘You’ll apologise to me, because it’s me that will make Barça win, not Messi’.

“It was a situation back then.

“Messi would come later but you can ask Xavi, Andres Iniesta and all the others – that was my era.

“It was me that made Barça win, and Guardiola would ask me for forgiveness.”

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