Didier Drogba joins Chelsea: 'Special relationship' with the Special One made it an easy decision for Drogba to return

Drogba signed a one-year contract to return to the club that he helped win the Champions League

Jose Mourinho and Didier Drogba have warned the Premier League the striker's Chelsea return is not a sentimental move.

The Blues favourite returned to Stamford Bridge on Friday on a one-year deal after leaving in 2012 for stints at Shanghai Shenhua and Galatasaray.

He may be 36 years old but Drogba insists he is coming back to contribute to the club's trophy ambitions - a sentiment echoed by manager Mourinho.

"Didier's coming because he's one of the best strikers in Europe," said Mourinho, himself in his second spell with the club, who originally signed the Ivory Coast international for £24million in 2004.

"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."

 

Drogba, Chelsea's fourth-highest goalscorer of all time with 157 goals in 341 appearances, cemented his place in club history by scoring first the equaliser and then the winning shoot-out penalty as they beat Bayern Munich in the 2012 Champions League final.

And he said of his return: "It was an easy decision - I couldn't turn down the opportunity to work with Jose again.

"Everyone knows the special relationship I have with this club and it has always felt like home to me.

"My desire to win is still the same and I look forward to the opportunity to help this team. I'm excited for this next chapter of my career."

Drogba's first spell at Stamford Bridge, spanning eight years, produced three Barclays Premier League titles, four FA Cups, two League Cups and the prized victory over Bayern.

Read more: Drogba signs one-year deal with Chelsea
Drogba's greatest Chelsea moments
Should you go back? The most famous U-turns

His 34 goals in European competition is a Chelsea record, as are his nine strikes in nine cup finals, and former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher hailed Drogba's aptitude for the big occasion.

"Looks like Drogba is back," he wrote on Twitter. "Loved our battles, best big game player I can remember."

Much of the reaction to the move centred around Drogba's extraordinary record against Arsenal.

He scored 13 times in 14 appearances against the Gunners, with his goals crucial in securing 15 Premier League points, progress in the 2007 League Cup and the 2009 FA Cup and victory in the 2005 Community Shield.

Broadcaster and Arsenal fan Piers Morgan wrote on Twitter: "Oh no. He's back," adding "King ThierryHenry - we need you back. Urgent." Both posts concluded "#Drogba".

PA

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life
Football Beyond Borders: Even the most distruptive pupils score at homework club

Education: Football Beyond Borders

Add football to an after-school homework club, and even the naughtiest boys can score
10 best barbecue books

Fire up the barbie: 10 best barbecue books

We've got Bibles to get you grilling and smoking like a true south American pro
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power
Ron Dennis exclusive: ‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

Ron Dennis shrugs off a poor start to the season in an exclusive interview, and says the glory days will come back
Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most