Chelsea will benefit from Eto’o experience, says Emenalo

Chelsea technical director Michael Emenalo believes the club will benefit from having the experience of Samuel Eto’o in the squad, Sky Sports has reported, with Emenalo adding the former Anzhi Makhachkala striker will perform a similar function to Wayne Rooney.

Rooney was a target of Chelsea all summer but the Blues were unable to prise the England international away from Manchester United, instead turning to Eto’o after Anzhi were forced to sell their high price foreign stars. The Cameroonian signed a one-year contract at Stamford Bridge, with Romelu Lukaku loaned to Everton as a result in order to give the Belgian youngster more regular playing time.

Emenalo said that Chelsea retain faith in Lukaku for the future but did not want to put too much pressure on the 20-year-old this season, and that Eto’o was a suitable replacement for Rooney after Chelsea gave up in their attempt to sign the former Everton forward.

In the case of Samuel Eto’o, it was an open secret that we wanted Wayne Rooney and I don’t need to explain what the idea is behind wanting a player like Rooney,” Emenalo told the official Chelsea website.

But we are not desperate and we know for the future we have Romelu Lukaku and incredible hope that he will come through and lead the line. People keep forgetting that he is only 20, and looking at the short-term plan, we don’t want to put too much pressure on a young player like him,” Emenalo continued.

He added: “So if we weren’t able to get Rooney and we had Lukaku, Ba and Torres, we felt comfortable with them but we also felt comfortable to bring Eto’o to give us a little bit of competition, because we wanted to freshen up that position. We have every confidence in Torres, Ba and Lukaku but with Eto’o we have bought experience.

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