Didier Drogba
Didier Drogba
Didier Yves Drogba Tébily is an Franco-Ivorian footballer who plays in the centre forward position. He currently plays for Chelsea in the Premier League, where he is deputy vice-captain, and is the captain and all-time top scorer of the Côte d'Ivoire national football team. He has scored more goals for Chelsea than any other foreign player and is currently Chelsea's fourth highest goal scorer of all time.
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Soccer-Drogba fined for refusing to play for Montreal
Yahoo News - 4 months
Montreal Impact striker Didier Drogba has been fined by Major League Soccer (MLS) for his refusal to play against Toronto FC last Sunday, the league announced on Friday. The amount of the fine, which was not disclosed by MLS, was consistent with the Collective Bargaining Agreement, the league said. Drogba, 38, sat out against Toronto after learning he would not be in the starting lineup.
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Soccer-Drogba returns to Montreal after dispute settled
Yahoo News - 4 months
Didier Drogba has returned to Major League Soccer's Montreal Impact after abruptly leaving for one game when told he would not be in the starting lineup, the club said on Tuesday. The 38-year-old former Chelsea striker, who has 10 goals and six assists in 18 starts this season, missed Sunday's game but the team said in a statement that the two sides have since met and resolved their issues. "Didier has accepted to assume the role that the head coach sees fit while contributing to the success of this club moving forward," Impact president Joey Saputo said.
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Didier Drogba
Yahoo News - 7 months
​Drogba quit international football in 2014 with 103 caps and 61 goals for Ivory Coast.  He was the team's captain for eight years, and led Ivory Coast to their first ever World Cup qualification. Unfortunately, Drogba never won an international tournament despite playing with some talented teammates. 
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MLS All-Stars fall to Arsenal, 2-1
LATimes - 7 months
Didier Drogba hardly felt like celebrating his goal given the MLS All-Stars missed multiple late scoring chances that cost them their all-star game against Premier League power Arsenal.  Chuba Akpom scored the deciding goal in the 87th minute from close range on a nice cross from the left side...
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LATimes article
Ivorian soccer star Drogba threatens legal action over attacks on his charity
Reuters.com - 11 months
DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Ivorian soccer star Didier Drogba has threatened legal action over accusations that his charity set up to help children in Africa had spent less than one percent of money raised on worthwhile projects.
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Reuters.com article
Ivorian soccer star Drogba threatens legal action over attacks on his charity
Yahoo News - 11 months
By Kieran Guilbert DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Ivorian soccer star Didier Drogba said on Thursday he would take legal action over accusations that his charity set up to help children in Africa had spent less than one percent of money raised on worthwhile projects. The Daily Mail, Britain's second biggest selling newspaper, said on its website that just 14,000 pounds out of 1.7 million pounds ($2.4 million) donated to the Didier Drogba Foundation had been used to benefit children in his homeland Ivory Coast. Britain's Charity Commission, a state-backed watchdog, said it was investigating the charity set up in Britain in 2009 by the former Chelsea striker, citing "serious regulatory concerns".
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Drogba signals commitment to the Impact
Yahoo News - about 1 year
(Reuters) - Didier Drogba indicated on Sunday that he will be returning to Major League Soccer's Montreal Impact, effectively ending speculation that he could be headed back to his former club Chelsea. Drogba, 37, joined the Impact in July and scored 11 goals in 11 games during the regular season, helping the team to a 7-3-1 record. Drogba sat in the stands with Abramovich and manager Guus Hiddink during a Chelsea match in December, further fuelling speculation he was headed back to Stamford Bridge.
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Drogba denies retirement report
Yahoo News - about 1 year
Didier Drogba denied reports of his retirement on Wednesday, saying he had not yet taken a decision over his future amid speculation about a possible coaching role with former club Chelsea. The Montreal Impact striker said he was still in discussions with the Major League Soccer outfit, who he joined last year. "Lovely to receive these messages but I have not yet announced my retirement & am still in discussion with @impactmontreal about my future," Drogba wrote on Twitter.
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Chelsea hold talks with MLS side Montreal over Drogba
Yahoo News - about 1 year
(Reuters) - Struggling Premier League champions Chelsea have held talks with Montreal Impact over former Blues striker Didier Drogba, the Major League Soccer team has said. British media reported earlier this month that Chelsea's billionaire owner Roman Abramovich was keen to offer Drogba a position on the team's coaching staff. "We are currently in contact with Didier Drogba and Chelsea FC," Montreal Impact said on its Twitter page on Wednesday.
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John Terry insists Chelsea players feel responsible for José Mourinho exit
Guardian (UK) - about 1 year
• Terry backs Guus Hiddink to restore confidence • Hiddink wants Didier Drogba to join Chelsea for third time John Terry has insisted Chelsea’s players feel responsible for the departure of José Mourinho but backed the interim manager, Guus Hiddink, to restore their confidence in the second half of the season. Flanked by the owner, Roman Abramovich, and Didier Drogba, Hiddink watched the reigning champions record only their second win from eight Premier League matches on Saturday against Sunderland to finally put some distance between themselves and the bottom three. The Dutchman, whose second spell at Stamford Bridge was confirmed before kick-off, will officially begin work on Tuesday having been parachuted in until the end of the season in an attempt to salvage something from the ashes of Mourinho’s departure. Continue reading...
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Guardian (UK) article
Manchester United v Norwich City, Premier League updates and more: clockwatch – live!
Guardian (UK) - about 1 year
Follow the action in the Premier League, Bundesliga and beyond Saturday scoreboard: all the day’s goals Email niall.mcveigh@theguardian.com or tweet @niallmcveigh 3.07pm GMT Also spotted in SW6: Didier Drogba, sitting alongside Hiddink and Abramovich; and a banner that says ‘three rats – Hazard, Costa and Fabregas’. Crikey. 3.06pm GMT A first goal for the defender since February puts balm on the gaping wounds at Stamford Bridge. More from Tim Hill, here. Continue reading...
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Guardian (UK) article
Impact say no Chelsea approach for Drogba
Yahoo News - about 1 year
The Montreal Impact on Friday denied that striker Didier Drogba had been contacted about a return to English Premier League club Chelsea, in turmoil since sacking manager Jose Mourinho. "The rumour about Didier Drogba is unfounded," Major League Soccer's Impact posted on their official Twitter account. The magazine Jeune Afrique reported Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich called 37-year-old Drogba hours after Mourinho parted ways the with the club on Thursday regarding a possible return to his old club.
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Chasing dreams: Young African footballers duped, dumped by traffickers
Yahoo News - about 1 year
By Kieran Guilbert DAKAR, Dec 7 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - On the pitches of ramshackle football academies across West Africa, teenage boys chase one another in pursuit of the ball, the chance to impress, and the prospect of a lucrative contract with one of Europe's top teams. Some 15,000 young players are moved out of West Africa each year under false pretences, estimates the charity Foot Solidaire, but a lack of monitoring means the number of boys being trafficked abroad could be far higher, experts say. "When you combine boys who want to leave Africa and dream of being the next Samuel Eto'o or Didier Drogba with men looking to make money, the situation is ideal for exploitation," said the human geography lecturer at Loughborough University in England.
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MLS is tougher than Premier League: Drogba
Yahoo News - over 1 year
By Tony Jimenez LONDON (Reuters) - Major League Soccer (MLS) offers a tougher challenge than the English Premier League and will soon be one of the best domestic competitions in world football, according to Chelsea great Didier Drogba. The former Ivory Coast striker has just completed a successful first season with the Montreal Impact after leaving Chelsea in May. "It's a different challenge (in the U.S.)," Drogba told Reuters in an interview. Believe me, it's more difficult than playing in the Premier League because of the travel.
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Drogba strikes again as Montreal advance in MLS Cup playoffs
Yahoo News - over 1 year
Former Chelsea star Didier Drogba kept up his incredible scoring record as Montreal Impact cruised past Toronto FC 3-0 to advance in the MLS Cup playoffs on Thursday. The Ivory Coast international bagged his 12th goal in 12 games since signing for Montreal in July after finally calling time on his career with Chelsea in the English Premier League. It capped a superb week for Drogba, who on Wednesday was named the MLS Player of the Month for a second straight time in recognition of his goalscoring form for Impact, whose fortunes have been transformed since his arrival.
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Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Didier Drogba
  • 2016
    Age 37
    In July 2016, Drogba was included in the roster for the 2016 MLS All-Star Game, scoring in a 2–1 defeat to Arsenal on 28 July.
    More Details Hide Details Drogba contributed to the Ivory Coast to qualify for its first ever FIFA World Cup, held in Germany in 2006. In February 2006, Drogba captained the Ivory Coast to their second Africa Cup of Nations final, scoring the only goal in their semi-final match with Nigeria and putting away the deciding spot-kick in their record-tying 12–11 penalty shootout quarter-final win over Cameroon. However, they lost in the final to Egypt 4–2 on penalty kicks after a 0–0 draw, with Drogba's shot being stopped by Egyptian goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary.
  • 2015
    Age 36
    He was named one of the three finalists for the 2015 MLS Newcomer of the Year Award.
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    Drogba finished the 2015 MLS regular season with 11 goals in 11 games.
    More Details Hide Details On 29 October, Drogba scored Montreal's third goal in a 3–0 home win over Toronto in the knock-out round of the Playoffs, to advance to the Eastern Conference Semi-finals for the first time in the club's history; they were eliminated by Columbus Crew SC.
    On 25 October, he scored both of the Impact's goals from back heels as the team came from behind to defeat Toronto FC 2–1 at home in the 401 Derby; the win gave Montreal the home advantage for their knock-out fixture against Toronto in the 2015 MLS Cup Playoffs.
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    On 27 July 2015, Drogba signed a Designated Player contract with Major League Soccer side Montreal Impact, believed to be 18 months in length.
    More Details Hide Details On 23 August, he made his debut in a 0–1 home loss against the Philadelphia Union, coming on as a substitute for Dilly Duka in the second half. On 5 September, Drogba scored a hat-trick on his first MLS start, the first player to do so in the league's history. Additionally, it was considered a "perfect hat-trick", with one goal scored with either foot and one with the head. He was September's MLS Player of the Month after scoring 7 goals in his first 5 games in the league.
    On 24 May 2015, Drogba announced that Chelsea's final game of the season against Sunderland would be his last as a Chelsea player.
    More Details Hide Details He started the game as captain and was substituted with injury after half an hour, being carried off by his teammates in an eventual 3–1 win.
  • 2014
    Age 35
    Drogba made his Premier League return for Chelsea in a 3–1 win away to Burnley, replacing winger Eden Hazard in the 84th minute at Turf Moor on 18 August 2014.
    More Details Hide Details On 17 September he made the first start of his second spell, in a 1–1 home draw against Schalke 04 in Chelsea's first game of the Champions League group stage. He scored his first goal in his second spell at Stamford Bridge on 21 October, converting a penalty kick in a 6–0 win over Maribor in the Champions League. Five days later, with Chelsea's attack limited by injuries to Diego Costa and Loïc Rémy, Drogba started against Manchester United at Old Trafford, making his 350th appearance for the club. Early in the second-half, he headed in the first Premier League goal of his second spell although Robin van Persie equalised in added time. He scored his 50th goal in European football against Schalke 04.
    On 28 July 2014, Chelsea announced that Drogba would wear the number 15 shirt which he wore when he first signed for the club in 2004.
    More Details Hide Details Mohamed Salah, who wore the number during the 2013–14 season, took over the number 17 shirt vacated by Eden Hazard. On 15 August, however, it was announced that Drogba had been given back the number 11 shirt he previously wore at the club, with its previous occupant Oscar taking over the number 8 jersey vacated by Frank Lampard.
    On 25 July 2014, Chelsea announced on their official website that Drogba completed his return to the club on a free transfer, and signed a one-year contract.
    More Details Hide Details Speaking on his move back to the club, Drogba said: "It was an easy decision. I couldn't turn down the opportunity to work with José Mourinho again. Everyone knows the special relationship I have with this club and it has always felt like home to me." Mourinho also commented on the transfer, saying: "He's coming because he's one of the best strikers in Europe. I know his personality very well and I know if he comes back he's not protected by history or what he's done for this club previously. He is coming with the mentality to make more history."
  • 2013
    Age 34
    On 11 August, he scored the only goal in the 2013 Turkish Super Cup against the same opponents, and he scored two second-half goals in a 2–1 away win against fellow city rivals Beşiktaş on 22 September, although the match was abandoned due to hooliganism from fans of the opponents.
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    However, on 30 January 2013, Shenhua released a press release that Drogba would unilaterally breach his contract if he were to join Galatasaray.
    More Details Hide Details Drogba argued that he had not been paid his wages by the club and asked FIFA, the sport's governing body, to invalidate his contract. In February 2013, FIFA granted a temporary license for him to play for Galatasaray pending the outcome of the contract dispute. On 15 February, Drogba scored his debut goal for Galatasaray just five minutes after coming off the bench against Akhisar Belediyespor in a match that ended 2–1. On 6 April, Drogba scored twice in a match against Mersin İdmanyurdu that ended 3–1. On 9 April, Drogba scored his first goal for Galatasaray in the Champions League, against Real Madrid. On 20 April, Drogba scored twice in a match against Elazigspor that ended 3–1. He won his first title with Galatasaray on 5 May, with a 4–2 win over Sivasspor. In Galatasary's derby match against Istanbul rivals Fenerbahçe on 12 May, Drogba and his Ivorian team-mate Emmanuel Eboue were subjects of racist chants from opposing fans in the team's 2–1 loss, but no fine or bans were handed down to the supporters or the club.
    On 28 January 2013, Drogba agreed to a one-and-a-half-year deal with Süper Lig team Galatasaray.
    More Details Hide Details He would earn a sign-on fee of €4 million plus basic wage of €4 million per season, €2 million for the remaining 2012–13 Süper Lig) and €15,000 per match.
  • 2012
    Age 33
    On 19 June 2012, Drogba declared he would be joining Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua, linking up with his former Chelsea teammate Nicolas Anelka.
    More Details Hide Details It was reported that he signed a two-and-a-half-year deal where he will earn £200,000 a week. On 22 July, Drogba made his debut for Shanghai Shenhua in a 1–1 away draw against Guangzhou R&F, coming on as a substitute for Brazilian defender Moisés in the second half. He assisted Cao Yunding's equaliser in the 67th minute. On 4 August, he scored his first two goals in a 5–1 win against Hangzhou Greentown. He scored two more goals on 25 August, both set up by Anelka, as Shenhua drew 3–3 with Shandong Luneng.
    On 22 May 2012, Chelsea released a note on their official website announcing that Drogba will be leaving the club when his contract expires at the end of June 2012.
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    In November 2012 Drogba was named Chelsea's greatest ever player in a poll of 20,000 fans conducted by Chelsea Magazine.
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    In the Champions League final on 19 May 2012, Drogba scored the equaliser from Juan Mata's corner in the 88th minute, taking Chelsea into extra time and then penalties.
    More Details Hide Details He also scored the winning penalty in the 4–3 penalty shootout that led Chelsea to the victory over Bayern Munich. Sir Alex Ferguson remarked: "As far as I was concerned, he Drogba won the Champions League for Chelsea." Drogba's headed effort marked his ninth goal in nine cup final appearances for Chelsea, Chelsea legend Gianfranco Zola spoke after the match about Drogba's ability in big games: "In all their very important matches he has put a stamp on it."
    Drogba scored his 100th Premier League goal for Chelsea on 10 March 2012, in a 1–0 win over Stoke City.
    More Details Hide Details He is the first African player to reach that landmark. Drogba scored his seventh goal at Wembley against London rivals Tottenham Hotspur on 15 April, blasting the ball past former teammate Carlo Cudicini as Chelsea became 5–1 winners and secured a place in the FA Cup Final against Liverpool. Three days later, he scored a vital goal as Chelsea beat Barcelona 1–0 at Stamford Bridge in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League Semi-final clash. Drogba became the first player to score in four different FA Cup Finals, as he netted the winner in Chelsea's 2–1 triumph over Liverpool on 5 May.
    Drogba scored his 99th Premier League goal for Chelsea on 25 February 2012, in a 3–0 win over Bolton Wanderers.
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    He also played in the 2012 UEFA Champions League Final, in which he scored an 88th-minute equaliser and the winning penalty in the deciding shoot-out against Bayern Munich.
    More Details Hide Details After spending 6 months with Shanghai Shenhua in China, and one and a half seasons with Turkish club Galatasaray where he scored the winning goal in the final of the 2013 Turkish Super Cup, Drogba returned to Chelsea in July 2014. With a career record of scoring 10 goals in 10 finals winning 10 trophies at club level, Drogba has been referred to as the "ultimate big game player." An Ivory Coast international between 2002 and 2014, Drogba captained the national team from 2006 until his retirement from the Ivory Coast team and is the nation's all-time top goalscorer with 63 goals from 104 appearances. He led the Ivory Coast to the 2006 FIFA World Cup, their first appearance in the tournament, and also scored their first goal. He later captained the Ivory Coast at the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups. He was part of the Ivory Coast teams that reached the final of the Africa Cup of Nations in 2006 and 2012, but were beaten on penalties on both occasions. On 8 August 2014, he announced his retirement from international football.
  • 2011
    Age 32
    On 31 December 2011, Drogba scored his 150th goal for Chelsea against Aston Villa, putting him level with Peter Osgood and Roy Bentley in terms of the club's top scorers of all time.
    More Details Hide Details Even though, Chelsea was leading with the penalty scored by Drobga, the game ended in a 3–1 loss for Chelsea.
    While playing against Norwich City on 27 August 2011, Drogba suffered a concussion in a collision with Norwich goalkeeper John Ruddy.
    More Details Hide Details After missing two games, Drogba made his return to the Chelsea squad on 24 September against Swansea City. Drogba went on scoring his first goal of the season in a 4–1 win. Drogba received a red card on 23 October against Queens Park Rangers, Chelsea ended up losing 1–0. On 29 November, Drogba rejected a new deal with Chelsea and was set to sign for the highest bidder.
  • 2010
    Age 31
    He had first complained of feeling unwell before the October 2010 international break but the illness was only diagnosed on 8 November 2010.
    More Details Hide Details Having diagnosed the problem, Chelsea insisted that he would make a full recovery within days.
    On 7 November 2010, Drogba missed the first half of Chelsea's 2–0 defeat by Liverpool.
    More Details Hide Details It was later revealed that he had been suffering from malaria for at least a month.
    The following week, Drogba scored the only goal of the 2010 FA Cup Final against Portsmouth from a free-kick, keeping up his record of having scored in all six English cup finals (FA Cup and League Cup) in which he has played.
    More Details Hide Details Drogba came on as a substitute for Anelka against Manchester United in the Community Shield, but could not help prevent Chelsea from succumbing to a 3–1 loss. However, he started the Premier League season in fine form, continuing from where he left off on the last day of the previous campaign as he scored a hat-trick against West Bromwich Albion in a 6–0 victory. In Chelsea's next game against Wigan Athletic at the DW Stadium, Drogba made three assists in another 6–0 win. Drogba also played the next game at home against Stoke City where he played the whole 90 minutes and scored his fourth Premier League goal of the season when he kicked home a penalty after Nicolas Anelka was brought down by Thomas Sørensen inside the box.
  • 2009
    Age 30
    He then scored a glancing header against Blackburn on 24 October 2009, bringing his tally to eight goals in eleven appearances, scoring his third goal in as many games.
    More Details Hide Details Drogba continued his fine form scoring a header against Bolton Wanderers in a 4–0 win in the League Cup, Drogba went on to score a goal in the same week with another 4–0 win against Bolton Wanderers in the Premier League. After missing the first three Champions League matches for Chelsea with a ban for being unsportsmanlike, Drogba started the fourth game against Spanish side Atlético Madrid. He scored two goals in the last ten minutes and the match ended 2–2. On 29 November, Drogba scored a goal against London rivals Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium, the second of which a free kick from outside the box. It brought his tally for the season to 14 goals in 16 games. On 12 December, Drogba continued his performance with two goals in 3–3 draw against Everton. Between 3 and 30 January Drogba was on Africa Cup of Nations duty and came back on 2 February against Hull City where he scored a 40th-minute equaliser to tie the game 1–1. On 24 March, Drogba scored his 30th goal of the season in an away game against Portsmouth.
    Drogba began the 2009–10 season in fine form for Chelsea, netting a penalty during a shoot-out in the Community Shield over Manchester United, before scoring twice in a 2–1 victory over Hull City.
    More Details Hide Details Drogba earned himself an assist when he was fouled in the penalty box to give Chelsea a penalty, which Frank Lampard converted, in a 3–1 victory over Sunderland. In Chelsea's third game of the season against West-London rivals Fulham, Drogba scored his third goal of the season. Drogba scored his fourth goal of the season, against Stoke City; Chelsea ended winning the game 2–1 with a late strike from Malouda. He added a fifth at home against London rivals Tottenham Hotspur on 20 September. He scored his 100th goal for Chelsea in a 3–1 defeat against Wigan Athletic. Drogba was again important in the 2–0 win over title rivals Liverpool on 4 October. He assisted both goals, setting up Nicolas Anelka and Florent Malouda.
    In the 2009 FA Cup Final, Drogba scored Chelsea's first and equalising goal as they went on to win 2–1.
    More Details Hide Details This was his sixth goal in a major cup final in England. Although Drogba had previously expressed his desire to switch clubs, he decided to remain with the Blues under new coach Carlo Ancelotti and signed a new contract.
  • 2008
    Age 29
    Drogba scored his second goal of the season in a 2–1 victory against CFR Cluj in the UEFA Champions League, while his first Premier League goal of the season came in a 2–0 win against West Bromwich Albion in late December 2008.
    More Details Hide Details Having missed many games through injury and suspension, Drogba had lost his first team place and manager Scolari favoured playing Nicolas Anelka as a lone striker rather than pairing the two. However, he resolved to regain his position in the squad. Upon the temporary appointment of Guus Hiddink in early February following the sacking of Scolari, Drogba enjoyed a rejuvenation of sorts, returning to his goal-scoring form with four goals in five games after the new manager took over. His revival in form saw him net twice against Bolton Wanderers, and four times in four Champions League matches, one in each leg of the last sixteen and quarter-final of the competition against Juventus and Liverpool respectively, with these goals ensuring Chelsea's passage into the semi-finals. Just four days after his Champions League games, Drogba scored a late goal in the FA Cup semi-final match against Arsenal after Frank Lampard's pass found Drogba and he carefully rounded Arsenal goalkeeper Łukasz Fabiański before passing the ball into Aersenal's empty net. Drogba also caused controversy after Chelsea's Champions League semi-final defeat at the hands of Barcelona. Feeling that many decisions had gone against Chelsea, substituted Drogba confronted referee Tom Henning Øvrebø after the final whistle. He received a yellow card in the process and was recorded shouting "It's a fucking disgrace" into a live television camera. On 17 June 2009, UEFA subsequently handed him a six-game European ban with the final two games suspended.
    Drogba suffered a string of injuries early on in the 2008–09 season and struggled to regain fitness, missing games from August to November due to knee problems.
    More Details Hide Details He scored his first goal of the season in mid-November but there was little reason to celebrate: he incurred disciplinary action and a three-match ban for throwing a coin back into the stands and Chelsea suffered a League Cup defeat against Burnley.
    On 30 April 2008, Drogba scored two goals in the second leg of the semi-final against Liverpool, which Chelsea won 3–2 at Stamford Bridge.
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    On 26 April 2008, Drogba faced controversy after a clash with Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidić.
    More Details Hide Details The Serbian centre-back had to have stitches under his lip after losing a tooth in the clash. There was discussion whether Drogba had the intention or not to injure his rival. The debate also called into question an earlier incident on 26 November 2006 where Drogba elbowed Vidić. Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson expressed concerns over elbowing in the Premier League. Despite media speculation, Drogba's yellow card for the clash was deemed adequate punishment by the Football Association. Controversy still dogged the player as before the UEFA Champions League semi-final second leg clash with Liverpool, Drogba was accused of diving by Liverpool manager Rafael Benítez. Benítez claimed to have compiled a four-year dossier of Drogba's "diving" antics but Drogba hit back at Benítez in an interview.
    He scored both goals in a key 2–1 victory against Arsenal on 23 March 2008, bringing Chelsea equal on points with leaders Manchester United.
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    Upon his return, Drogba scored a goal in the 2008 League Cup Final, making him the all-time leading scorer in League Cup Finals with four goals, but could not help prevent Chelsea fall to a 2–1 defeat at the hands of Tottenham Hotspur.
    More Details Hide Details Drogba also became the first player to score in three League Cup finals and the first to score in three consecutive English domestic cup finals.
  • 2007
    Age 28
    In December 2007, Drogba was voted fourth (after Kaká, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo) for the 2007 FIFA World Player of the Year.
    More Details Hide Details Drogba continued scoring goals but suffered an injury at the training ground and decided to have an operation on his knee. He was unable to play for four weeks and missed key games against Valencia, Arsenal and Liverpool. Drogba returned from injury to play in an FA Cup third round match against Queens Park Rangers and wore the captain's armband for the last 30 minutes he was on the pitch, but that was his last performance for Chelsea before international duty at the Africa Cup of Nations.
    Drogba made it up to the fans by scoring in Chelsea's 2–0 victory over Middlesbrough on 20 October 2007, against Schalke 04 in the Champions League four days later, and two goals against Manchester City.
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  • 2006
    Age 27
    The semi-final was a rematch of the 2006 final against Egypt, but it was to be the end of the road for Drogba and the Ivory Coast, losing 4–1 to the eventual champions.
    More Details Hide Details On 9 February, Drogba lost 4–2 to hosts Ghana and thus ended their run in the playoffs. Drogba scored six goals in five qualification games to help the Ivory Coast qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. In the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations Drogba scored one goal in the 3–1 victory against Ghana in the group stage. The Ivory Coast reached the quarter-finals but lost 2–3 to Algeria. In March 2010, he was named as the 2009 African Footballer of the Year, his second time winning the award in his career. On 4 June 2010, Drogba was injured in a friendly match with Japan. He received the injury in a high challenge from defender Túlio Tanaka. He fractured the ulna in his right arm and had an operation the next day in the hope of making the finals. On 15 June 2010, Drogba was cleared by FIFA to play in the Ivory Coast's first group game against Portugal wearing a protective cast on his broken arm. The match ended in a goalless draw at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium with Drogba coming on in the 65th minute. On 20 June 2010, Drogba became the first player from an African nation to score against Brazil in a World Cup match, scoring with a header in the 78th minute as the Ivory Coast were defeated 1–3. On 25 June 2010, the Ivory Coast went out of the competition despite winning 3–0 against North Korea in their final match.
    Drogba was sent off in the 117th minute of the Champions League Final for slapping defender Vidić, becoming only the second player to be sent off in a European Cup final – after Jens Lehmann in 2006 – and the first for violent conduct.
    More Details Hide Details Chelsea went on to lose 6–5 on penalties after a 1–1 draw in extra time. Chelsea assistant boss Henk ten Cate revealed Drogba was due to take the decisive fifth spot-kick in the shootout. Team captain John Terry took his place but missed after slipping whilst taking the penalty.
    Despite having signed a four-year contract with the club in 2006, Drogba reportedly pointed out several favoured clubs in the interview, identifying Barcelona, Real Madrid, Milan or Internazionale as possible future destinations, he later admitted he regretted this and was 100% committed to Chelsea.
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  • 2004
    Age 25
    Drogba faced problems off the pitch during the end of the season as his transfer from Marseille to Chelsea in July 2004 came under scrutiny.
    More Details Hide Details The Stevens inquiry in June 2007 expressed concerns because of the lack of co-operation from agents Pinhas Zahavi and Barry Silkman. The 2007–08 season began badly for Drogba as he expressed doubts about the departure of manager José Mourinho. He was reportedly in tears when Mourinho told him he was leaving the club, and said "Mourinho's departure destroys a certain familiarity we had at the club. Many of us used to play first and foremost for the manager. Now we need to forget those feelings and find another source of motivation". Following these claims, Drogba told France Football Magazine "I want to leave Chelsea. Something is broken with Chelsea, The damage is big in the dressing room".
    Signing for Chelsea in July 2004 for £24 million, Drogba scored in his third game for the club with a header against Crystal Palace.
    More Details Hide Details His season was interrupted when he pulled a stomach muscle against Liverpool which kept him out of action for over two months. Chelsea won the Premier League, only their second English top-flight championship and their first in 50 years, and the League Cup. Later, Drogba scored in extra time in a 3–2 final win against Liverpool at the Millennium Stadium, as well as reaching the semi-finals of the Champions League. Drogba scored a somewhat disappointing 16 goals in a total of 40 games for Chelsea in his first season: ten in the Premier League, five in the Champions League and one in the League Cup final. Drogba started the 2005–06 season by scoring two goals in a Community Shield win over Arsenal. His reputation was marred amidst accusations of cheating during Chelsea's 2–0 win over Manchester City. Replays showed that he had used his hand to control the ball before scoring the second of his two goals. This occurred just a week after a similar incident against Fulham where the goal was disallowed. Chelsea went on to retain the league title with two games to play, becoming only the second club to win back-to-back English titles in the Premier League era. Again Drogba finished with 16 goals for the season, 12 in the Premier League, two in the Community Shield, one in the Champions League and one in the FA Cup.
    His shirt from his only season at Marseille is also framed in the basilica of Marseille, Notre-Dame de la Garde, which he presented to the church before the 2004 UEFA Cup Final.
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  • 2001
    Age 22
    The second half of the 2001–02 season saw Drogba make 11 appearances and score three goals for Guingamp.
    More Details Hide Details While his contributions helped the club avoid relegation, the coaching staff remained unconvinced of their new young striker. However, the next season he rewarded his coaches' patience, scoring 17 goals in 34 appearances and helping Guingamp finish seventh, a record league finish. He credited his teammates for his impressive season, highlighting the contributions of winger Florent Malouda, a long time friend of Drogba, as a key factor in his goalscoring prolificity that season. His strong goal scoring record attracted interest from larger clubs and at the end of the season, he moved to Ligue 1 side Olympique de Marseille for a fee of £3.3 million. After a switch of coaches, Drogba retained his position in the team, scoring 19 goals and winning the National Union of Professional Footballers (UNFP) Player of the Year award. He also scored five goals in that season's UEFA Champions League and six in the UEFA Cup. At the end of the season, he was bought by Chelsea as the club's then record signing for £24 million.
    Halfway through the 2001–02 season Ligue 1 club Guingamp consolidated months of interest with a transfer offer and Drogba left Le Mans for a fee of £80,000.
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  • 1999
    Age 20
    He made his first team debut for Le Mans soon thereafter and signed his first professional contract in 1999.
    More Details Hide Details The same year, he and his Malian wife Alla had their first child, Isaac. He grew into his new responsibilities, later stating: "Isaac's birth was a turning point in my life, it straightened me out". His first season, in which he scored seven goals in thirty games, boded well for the future, but during the following season he did not live up to expectations. Drogba lost his place to Daniel Cousin due to injury, then upon his return, he failed to score throughout the remainder of the season. However, he returned to form the following season, scoring five goals in 21 appearances.
  • 1997
    Age 18
    He also completed two hat-tricks; one against Watford and the other against Levski Sofia in the Champions League, Chelsea's first hat-trick in European competition since Gianluca Vialli in the Cup Winners' Cup in 1997.
    More Details Hide Details In his last competitive game that season, he scored the winning goal over Manchester United in the first FA Cup final at the new Wembley Stadium. This also meant that he joined Norman Whiteside (Manchester United in 1983) and Mark Hughes (Manchester United in 1994) as players who have scored goals in both English domestic finals in the same year, although Drogba was the first player to end up on the winning team after scoring in both finals. In January 2007, Drogba was named the Ivorian Player of the Year, ahead of Kader Keïta, Aruna Dindane, and Kolo Touré. In March, he was named African Footballer of the Year for the first time, ahead of Samuel Eto'o and Chelsea teammate Michael Essien. His performances during the season saw him named in the PFA Premier League Team of the Year and runner-up to Cristiano Ronaldo in the PFA Player of the Year awards.
  • 1991
    Age 12
    In 1991, his parents also travelled to France; first to Vannes and then, in 1993, setting in Antony in the Paris suburbs, at which point the 15-year-old Drogba returned to live with them and his siblings.
    More Details Hide Details It was here that he began playing team football more frequently, joining a local youth side. Drogba then joined the semi-professional club Levallois, gaining a reputation as a prolific scorer in the youth team and impressing the coach with his professional attitude. His performances earned him a place in the senior squad but despite scoring in his debut, the 18-year-old Ivorian failed to make an impression on Jacques Loncar, the first team coach. When Drogba finished school he moved to the city Le Mans to study accountancy at university and he had to change clubs, becoming an apprentice at Ligue 2 club Le Mans. However, his first two years there were marred by injuries and he was physically struggling to cope with the training and match schedule. Former Le Mans coach Marc Westerloppe later remarked that "it took Didier four years to be capable of training every day and playing every week". Furthermore, Drogba's complicated family life meant that he had never attended a football academy and only began daily football training as a fully grown adult.
  • 1978
    Born on March 11, 1978.
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