Samuel Eto'o has been cheering on Mazembe, but today's Club World Cup Final “is not a game you play. It's a game you win.”
The Inter and Cameroon star will be one of the key figures in the FIFA showdown in Abu Dhabi at 17.00 UK time.
“I am very proud of Mazembe for coming this far,” he said of the Congo club that eliminated Pachuca and Internacional.
“In this tournament they have played with heart, faith and a battling spirit, reaching a Final that nobody believed in. They scored great goals and there was nothing lucky about their qualification.
“Mazembe deserve respect and to win we'll need to see the same Inter that beat Seongnam in the semi-final.
“I would've liked to have seen an African side in the World Cup Final too, but this is also a dream to face Mazembe in the Club World Cup Final.
“Having said that, I want to take home the trophy. When you step on to the pitch in these situations, you have to give it your all and not leave room for any regrets,” continued Eto'o in the Gazzetta dello Sport.
“In 2006 with Barcelona-Arsenal, in 2009 against Manchester United and in 2010 when Inter faced Bayern Munich, I said the same thing: The Final is not a game you play. It is a game you win.”
Now that Diego Milito has returned from his injury, Eto'o is once again pushed out wide left.
“Rafa Benitez asked the same as Jose Mourinho, to sacrifice myself for the good of the team in last season's position, and I am ready to do so. I'd even play in goal this evening.”