Eto’o Recalls His Message To Vieira Before He Played Against Messi In 2005
It feels like a lifetime ago since Lionel Messi came bursting on the scene at Barcelona, but Samuel Eto'o was one of the players who noticed his immediate potential.
The 37-year-old Cameroonian striker had the opportunity to play alongside the Argentine magician, from his emergence in Barça's senior team up to the point when he left the Camp Nou in 2009 for Inter Milan.
So, when the former Chelsea star spoke to Patrick Vieira about the Barcelona forward before he played against him, he wasn't messing around.
Speaking in the Take the Ball, Pass the
Ball documentary, Eto'o recalled what he told the former Arsenal player before
he stepped onto the pitch with Messi in the 2005 Joan Gamper Trophy match.
"I told him one day it would seem like every player who came before Messi was playing a different sport," he said (via the Guardian).
Vieira probably came to believe the hype after he saw the man himself in action. There is no denying that then-Juve manager Fabio Capello did, who was blown away by the five-time Ballon d'Or winner.
"In my entire life, I have never seen a player of such quality and personality at such a young age, particularly wearing the 'heavy' shirt of one of the world's great clubs," he said (via Goal).
"That guy can do whatever he wants with the ball. It's impressive winning a world youth title this summer, but this was outstanding -- this was playing with men, not against kids his own age."
According to Barcelona's website, the 72-year-old Italian manager said that he has "never seen a
player of such quality."
Messi:- Footy Accumulators (@FootyAccums) 12 November 2018
"It's good that the league is more competitive than ever, nothing is easy, anyone can beat anyone and I hope it continues like that for some time." pic.twitter.com/goKS0RRDb4
Barcelona have only ever lost one game in which Lionel Messi has scored 2+ goals:- Squawka Football (@Squawka) 12 November 2018
• 158 games
• 152 wins
• 5 draws
• 1 loss
Real Betis make history. pic.twitter.com/8tSAsNtK9F
Don't understand how someone who loves football can hate Lionel Messi. Okay, he doesn't have to be your favorite player, but to hate him? Just odd.- J. (@Messilizer) 12 November 2018
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Featured Image Credit: PA