Samuel Eto’o has left English Premier League club Everton for Sampdoria of the Italian Serie A. The 33-year-old Cameroonian striker just joined the Merseyside club in August, but manager Roberto Martinez has used the prolific goalscorer in just 14 league matches, with most of them being as a substitute. It’s been reported that Eto’o, who had three goals in those 14 league contests and four in 20 appearances in all competitions, has signed a 2.5-year deal with Sampdoria. Eto’o arrived at Goodison Park in August on a free transfer from his former club Chelsea.

Martinez stated on Everton’s official website, “We thank Samuel Eto’o for his efforts and for bringing his know-how to the team and to Everton’s training ground Finch Farm, where he passed on some of his terrific experience to all of the young players in particular. The memory of his performances in Europe stand out especially. On behalf of all Evertonians, we wish him well for the next chapter in his career.”

Sampdoria sits in a tie for fourth place in Serie A and are aiming for a top-three finish and a berth in next season’s European Champions League tournament. Sampdoria has signed five new players in the current January transfer window in a push to reach the top three. Eto’o returns to the Serie A, where he formerly starred with Inter Milan from 2009 to 2011. He managed to win the Italian Cup and league in 2009/10 as well as the Champions League under former manager Jose Mourinho. He also won the Champions League a year earlier as a member of Spanish side Barcelona.

As for Everton, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to ship out one of their top attacking players while they sit in 12th place in the league with just 23 points after 22 games. The Liverpool-based outfit is just four points ahead of the relegation zone and will miss the four-time African Footballer of the Year. Eto’o joined Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala after leaving Italy in 2011 and was reportedly the world’s highest-paid footballer at the time.

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