Shanghai Shenhua have confirmed talks to sign Didier Drogba on a free transfer from Chelsea are continuing 'as planned'.
Sky Sports reports how the 34-year-old Ivorian international striker revealed he will leave west London upon the expiry of his contract this June, after helping the Blues clinch the Champions League title in dramatic style in Munich on Saturday.
Drogba's performance at the Allianz Arena, where he headed the equaliser in the 1-1 draw with Bayern before converting the decisive penalty in the shoot-out, led many to believe he would sign a new deal to remain at Stamford Bridge.
However, the African will now end his eight-year association with Chelsea in the perfect way, and is ready to embark on a new challenge as he approaches the twilight of his career.
Drogba has been linked with a move to China, following in the footsteps of former Chelsea teammate Nicolas Anelka, after Shanghai Shenhua owner Zhu Jun revealed discussions between the two parties are progressing well.
"As of now, Shenhua's negotiations with Drogba are continuing just as planned," he told the Oriental Sports Daily.
Meawhile, Anelka - who joined Shenhua in January - is currently employed as player-coach at the club after the recent sacking of former Fulham boss Jean Tigana.