Didier Drogba: Tribute to a Living Legend
Chelsea’s 4th highest goal scorer of all time. The man who’s scored more goals for Chelsea than any other foreign player. Highest all-time goal scorer for Côte d’Ivoire. Champions League hero. These are some words that can be used to describe Didier Yves Drogba Tébily. None of these words will ever come close to describing how much we love him.
|The penalty that sealed the deal|
It’s not hard to understand why, given the numerous moments of joy Chelsea fans have had because of him. From scoring the first ever goal at the new Wembley in the FA Cup final in 2007, scoring the goal against Manchester United in 2010 at Old Trafford that put us top of the Premier League to netting the winning penalty in the Champions League final in 2012, Drogba has always been in the thick of things. He was one who could rise to the occasion, which is why it is no surprise that he always seemed to be at his best during crunch situations. Most Chelsea fans had all but given up hopes of Champions League football in 2012-13, but Drogba’s equalizer was enough to knock the wind out of Bayern’s sails, & his penalty which won us the Champions League for the first time in our history was composed & emphatic.
When Jose Mourinho first wanted to buy Didier Drogba, he was met with skepticism by the Chelsea board. They failed to understand what The Special One saw in him that was worth paying £24M for. Mourinho was adamant however, & eventually he had his way. Funnily enough, Didier Drogba was extremely reluctant to join the club. He even hoped that the transfer fell through. I wonder if he still feels the same way…
Nevertheless, one can argue that the £24M that Roman Abramovich spent on him was some of the best business he’s ever done. In 341 appearances that span over 8 seasons, Didier Drogba has scored 157 goals & made 71 assists. He will always be remembered for his 13 goals against Arsenal & his 8 goals at Wembley. I’m sure that Wembley will miss Drogba. I’m sure that Arsenal won’t.
His departure leaves a void in Chelsea that is going to be very hard to fill. Not only was he our main striker for 8 seasons (the arrival of players like Andriy Shevchenko, Nicholas Anelka & more recently Fernando Torres never changed that), but he was also one of our biggest personalities on the pitch. Whenever the team looked down & out, Drogba (along with Lamps & JT) could be seen yelling words of encouragement to all the players. More often than not, he led by example & upped his game whenever the team required him to do so. Not bad for a player who didn’t want to join the club in the first place.
Farewell, Didier. You may have left the club, but you will always remain a part of Chelsea FC.