He was a right-back who Skippered the Cameroon National Team at the 1990 and 1994 editions of the FIFA world Cup.
Tataw Etta Stephen, was born on March 31, 1963 in Yaounde.
He began his career in Yaounde playing with Tonnere Yaounde from 1988 to 1991 under difficult conditions.
Although Tonnerre was one of Cameroon’s leading clubs, they lacked basic facilities.
The team played on a baked earth pitch in a stadium with no showers or dressing rooms.
Tataw Etta Stephen later played with Olympic Mvolye from 1992 to 1994.
In October 1990, Tataw started his professional career and joined English Football League First Division Club Queens Park Rangers on trial.
It was reported that he was “bemused” by the experience:
“The manager said I was good – excellent – but he was full up. I was a right-back and he did not need one. Why did he not tell me this before I came?” Tataw is quoted to have asked the team officials.
Being an excellent player, Tataw Etta Stephen was the following month reported to be on trial with Football League Second Division club Brighton Hove Albion.
Tataw Etta Stephen is described as a determined player.
One of his most striking moments While he was playing for Olympic of Mvolyé in Cameroon was during the 1992 cup final against Diamant of Yaounde.
He was dragged from his car and beaten up by four armed men days before the 1992 Cup final.
He rebounded to captain his club in the match and played well, winning the penalty kick from which team mate, Bertin Ebwellé struck the only goal.
In 1995, he joined Tosu Futures of Japan. He became the first African footballer to play for a professional Japanese club.
While he was in Japan, he tried to guide his club to the J-League, the top division, But in 1997, Tosu Futures folded due to the withdrawal of its main sponsor.
Tataw Etta Stephen hoped to play for Sagan Tosu, the new club in the city, but he did not agree with the terms terms and retired.
He is probably best remembered as the captain of Cameroon during their historical run at the 1990 FIFA World Cup.
The team became the first African nation to reach the quarterfinals of the competition.
Stephen Etta Tataw actually had a rich experience with the lions.
Selected 63 times between 1986 and 1994, he won the 1988 Africa Cup of Nations in Morocco.
It was considered as the climax of his career.
With the lions, Tataw played his first international encounter on 12/07/1987 against Malawi.
Tataw Etta Stephen upon retirement spent most of his time in Cameroon.
In April 2018 Tataw Etta Stephen was one of 77 applicants for the vacant job of Cameroon National Team Coach.
Two (2) year after, he was chosen alongside Salomon Olembe to assist at the draws of the 2020 African Nations Championship (CHAN).
The event took place on Monday January 17, 2020 at the Wards Multipurpose Sports Complex in Yaounde.
Tataw Etta Stephen and Salomon Olembe represented two generations of Cameroonian footballers.
Since then, the indomitable lions legendary right-back football star had been absent from major sports events for an illness that finally took his life Friday, July 31, 2020 in Yaounde.
His team mates refer to him as soft spoken .
May his soul rest in perfect peace.