Zlatan Ibrahimovic wanted to leave the San Siro and move to the Camp Nou, but Inter would only sanction a move if they got Eto’o in return – along with €46million (£41m).
Mourinho and Inter centre-half Marco Materazzi both sent messages to the Cameroon international in order to persuade him to join, according to The Athletic.
Materazzi texted Eto’o, saying: ‘If you come to Inter, we’ll win everything.’
Mourinho followed up with a picture of an Inter Milan shirt with the No. 9 on the back.
‘It’s yours,’ Mourinho wrote. ‘Waiting for you.’
Eto’o was convinced and moved to Milan.
Having won the treble with Barcelona in the 2008/09 season, he immediately followed up that feat with Inter Milan.
Mourinho rates him among the best players he ever worked with and told The Athletic: ‘It’s strange that Samuel, during all his career, never managed to win the Ballon d’Or.’
The pair worked together again at Stamford Bridge, in the first season of Mourinho’s second spell in charge of Chelsea.
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