Bogdan Maran/Associated Press
Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho caused more than a few raised eyebrows prior to Sunday afternoon’s crucial league encounter with Manchester United at Stamford Bridge by opting to start with veteran striker Samuel Eto’o in attack ahead of the in-form Fernando Torres.
However, that is one of the self-styled Special One’s many great strengths—deciphering exactly which players are most suited to feature against a particular opponent.
Once again, though, the Portuguese was spot-on in thinking that the Cameroon international’s big-match experience, which includes a goal against United in the 2009 UEFA Champions League final for Barcelona, would prove decisive in the outcome of the match, as Eto’o netted a hat-trick in the Blues’ 3-1 win.
And what’s more, in the process, Eto’o became the first Chelsea player since 1954 to score three goals in a game against the Red Devils.