By Oma Akatugba
Ivorian football legend, Didier Drogba has won the UEFA President’s Award for 2020. Drogba, a Chelsea great and Olympique Marseille football legend is trying to become an administrator in his home country, Ivory Coast but has met repellents from the administration.
Drogba scored 104 goals in 254 appearances for Chelsea and is Ivory Coast’s highest goal scorer of all time. UEFA President, Ceferin and other teammates, and admirers of Drogba have hailed him.
”Didier is a hero to millions of football fans for his achievements throughout his glittering playing career.
He is a leader – a pioneer. I will remember him as a player for his skill, strength and intelligence, but above all for his insatiable appetite to succeed – a trait which is just as present in his desire to help others off the field of play.”
UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin “He’s one of the few players who holds the ball up and scores lots of goals.
He has scored nearly one in two for his whole career. He is two types of striker in one.”
Samuel Eto’o, former Barcelona, Inter and Chelsea forward “Drogba did what all strikers should do and that is score in the biggest games.
He scored three winners in the FA Cup final, got the crucial goals in two League Cup finals and who could forget what he did in Munich in the Champions League final? At his best, he was unplayable.”
Jamie Carragher, former Liverpool defender “I have always seen Drogba as an example to follow in terms of a centre-forward.
Just watching him train helped me. Just seeing him I was amazed. I specifically used to watch Chelsea, just to see Drogba.”
Diego Costa, Atlético forward “Drogba sent me a message recently. I told him that I’m still watching all his goals that he scored years ago.”
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Arsenal forward. “Drogba – one of the best strikers I have seen. He had everything.
Pace, really strong, good in the air; he was amazing.” – Gerard Piqué, Barcelona defender “Without him I wouldn’t have enjoyed the personal success I had at Chelsea but also the club would not have leagues and Champions leagues titles to their name.
He always produced in the big games.
He was a monster in the dressing room and a great friend away from football. It was an honour to have played with him.”
Frank Lampard, former Chelsea midfielder and now manager “I kept saying to people: ‘Will somebody please shoot Drogba?’
because his performances were unbelievable.
He carried their team, I thought, and he kept getting these incredible goals … He is a powerful lad, a massive physique.
He has strength and plays every game.” – Sir Alex Ferguson, former Manchester United manager “There are a lot of players with fantastic technique, but they are not leaders.
They have not made the most of their careers, because they do not have a strong character, personality or courage.
You need all of those as much as technique. Didier has it all. When you find a player who has talent and is unselfish: hai vinto. You’ve won.” – Carlo Ancelotti, former Chelsea manager.