Former Cameroon soccer star, and current Cameroonian Football Federation president Samuel Eto’o apologized Tuesday after getting into a “violent altercation” with a fan at the World Cup on Monday.
Eto’o released a statement in which he alleged the fan was a supporter of Algeria. Eto’o also claimed he has been the target of “insults and allegations of cheating” after Cameroon defeated Algeria in the third round of the event. He said Algerian fans harassed and pestered him after the game.
Eto’o called the skirmish an “unfortunate incident” that does not reflect his personality.
Video of the encounter appears to show Eto’o confronting a man with a camera. The two appear to exchange words, though it’s unclear what is said. At one point in the video, Eto’o, who is being held back by multiple people, charges at the man and kicks him in the face. Eto’o walks away after the kick. The man gets up, grabs his camera and walks off in the opposite direction.
Eto’o had a lengthy professional career, seeing time with Real Madrid, Barcelona, Mallorca and Chelsea, among many other clubs. He was also a member of the Cameroon Olympics team that won a gold medal in 2000.
Eto’o retired as a professional in 2019. In 2021, he was named the president of the Cameroonian Football Federation.