Africa’s football legends: Didier Drogba

By Alexis Billebault
Posted on Friday, 25 June 2010 10:11

Côte d’Ivoire have to score a mountain of goals if they are to qualify for

the second round. If any man can help them pull off a miracle, it’s

Didier Drogba.

In his five years at Chelsea, Drogba has not always felt at home, despite his close relationship with coach José Mourinho (now at Inter Milan).?

Drogba adored Olympique de Marseille, but the $55m offered by Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich was more than the French club could match.?

He now seems to have warmed to London life, and memories of his early French clubs – Levallois, Guingamp and Le Mans – seem distant.?

A nephew of Michel Goba, the Ivorian international exiled in France who took him in when he was three years old, Drogba has in his time with the Blues grown into one of the top strikers in the world. He has won the Premier League twice with Chelsea, been its top scorer (in 2006) and twice won the FA Cup.?

But Drogba takes his international commitments seriously, to the point where he tries to mix politics with football, organising a match in the north of his country which esentially remains divided by civil war.

First capped in September 2002, he helped take the Elephants to the African Cup of Nations final in 2006 and to the semi-final two years later. The team was not rated at all before Drogba’s arrival. Their presence in the 2010 World Cup is surely a credit to the Chelsea super-striker.

This article was first published in The Africa Report’s World Cup 2010 edition in May.

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