Didier Drogba is seemingly set to leave Galatasaray following the expiration of his deal at the end of this month and, it would appear, the veteran Ivorian striker could secure an emotional return to Chelsea. That is, at least, according to the esteemed Richard Keys.
Drogba will be a free agent as of July 1 and would seem likely to bring about an end to his stint with Galatasaray having joined the Istanbul club from Shangha Shenhua after a failed spell in China. And is Chelsea his next destination?
It seems to be a distinct possibility, that is if you believe Keys of course, who tweeted on Wednesday that Stamford Bridge could be Drogba’s next destination. Keys said: “Looks like The Drog could very well be on his way back to Chelsea.”
Keys, once a respected broadcaster in the UK, has become a subject of derision and ridicule for his forthright tweets and ‘ITK’ blogs, and has almost reached a self parodying stage with his antics alongside Andy Gray in Doha. But could he be right about Drogba?
Well, if we are to base the assessment on previous form, then the case to believe Keys’ comment becomes a strong one. The former Sky Sports presenter appeared to have an inside track on David Moyes’ demise at Manchester United, while more recently seemed to show he had well placed sources at Chelsea.
A week before Cesc Fabregas was confirmed as a Chelsea acquisition, Keys tweeted to claim the former Arsenal captain would “definitely” be completing a transfer to west London. An educated guess based on reports from elsewhere, or a genuine scoop? On that we can’t be sure, but it is clear he got that one right, at least.
In what capacity would Drogba return?
At the age of 36 it would be fair to assume that Drogba may turn his talents to coaching rather than continue playing, but he will almost certainly wish to prolong his career for at least another season.
The Chelsea icon does seem to be obvious coaching or management material - not because he lacks the credentials, but it is more likely he would focus his attention away from the game post-retirement. Drogba has expressed an interest to venture into politics, while his charity projects will take up a significant amount of his time.
Does he have a part to play?
Drogba may not be the player he was in his halcyon Chelsea days, but his abilities have not diminished dramatically since his departure from the club. He remains a greater threat than Fernando Torres or Demba Ba, and his expertise and influence will be invaluable.
The arrival of Diego Costa for £32 million is imminent, and the imposing Spaniard shares more attributes with Drogba than any other player among Jose Mourinho’s number. Drogba’s most important role could be to exact the very best from Costa following the completion of his transfer.