Didier Drogba Leaving Chelsea: Ivorian's 10 Greatest Moments at Chelsea
While this is one of the saddest bit of sports news I've heard in awhile, this article is meant to celebrate Drogba's greatness. Since 2004, the Ivorian has been a staple in the Chelsea XI, and he has given opposing teams nightmares ever since.
Obviously, when you score over 150 goals at a club, you're bound to have some great moments. This list celebrates Drogba's greatest.
10. Goal vs. AC Milan (2009)
In the very first World Football Challenge, Didier Drogba scored one of the craziest goals of his career.
As the ball was bouncing around early in the first half, Drogba took a turn, looked up and unleashed an absolute screamer into the back of the net. The goal looked straight out of a video game, and no one on Milan seemed to know what happened.
Naturally, after starting to run, Drogba stood and waited for his teammates to congratulate him on an incredible moment.
It wasn't on the biggest stage, but this goal is one of Drogba's finest moments.
9. Goal vs. Tottenham Hotspur (2012)
In a 0-0 game, Didier Drogba brought down a long ball, and turned toward his left.
As the defender shadowed him, cutting off the angle, Drogba unleashed a left-footed rocket past Carlo Cudicini, who had no chance.
As the announcer so aptly put it, this was, by far, Drogba's best goal at Wembley Stadium.
With that said, it wasn't necessarily the greatest goal he scored in that stadium, but we'll get to that.
8. Winning Golden Boot (2010)
Remember how this year's final day went down to the final kick?
Yeah, 2010 wasn't quite like that.
While Didier Drogba also won the Golden Boot in 2007, this one has to be sweeter. He scored a hat-trick on the final day, and Chelsea destroyed Wigan Athletic to win the league by one point.
None of Drogba's goals were spectacular, but they each illustrate Drogba's greatest skills. He wins a header, finishes (a penalty) off the woodwork and poaches on the back post. When Drogba does these things, Chelsea are one of the best teams in Europe.
7. Goal vs. Everton (2006)
This goal is one of the most ridiculous goals you'll ever see.
After chesting the ball down, Didier Drogba turns and unleashes a monstrous volley that dips over the keeper and into the net. The ball went right into the middle of the net, which shows just how incredible the dip was.
This goal truly was ridiculous.
6. Goal vs. Barcelona (2012)
No one thought Chelsea could beat Barcelona.
However, after this goal, everyone started to believe.
After Frank Lampard sent a superb ball, Ramires took a great touch off his chest. Then he sent an off-balance pass (with his weak foot!) across the middle. Somehow, it found Drogba, who put it away.
It wasn't the most clinical finish, but Drogba isn't always about scoring a traditional goal. He found a way to knock it in, and that's what Drogba's all about.
5. Goal vs. Liverpool (2006)
This goal is very similar to the Everton volley, but it's slightly better.
While it is closer, Drogba controls the ball with a defender on him. He spins quicker. And he strikes it with his weak foot.
I'm not trying to take anything away from the Everton strike, but this volley against Liverpool was simply better. Pepe Reina didn't stand a chance, and that's saying something.
4. Winner vs. Arsenal (2009)
En route to the 2009 FA Cup title, Chelsea had to knock off Arsenal in the semi-final.
Luckily, Didier Drogba was up to the challenge.
After an incredible pass from Frank Lampard, Drogba outpaced the centre-back. Then he took a touch around the keeper to seal Arsenal's fate.
Drogba's composure and finishing skills were on display here, but it was the magic of Wembley that made this even better.
3. Champions League Final Equaliser vs. Bayern Munich (2012)
All looked lost in the Champions League Final.
Chelsea had blinked for one second, and Bayern Munich took the lead. It seemed like the Blues' magical run had finally come to an end.
Then, in the 88th minute, Didier Drogba rose to the occasion and headed in one of the most important goals of his career. Even when all seemed lost, Drogba was just waiting for the right moment.
When he saw the moment, Drogba took full advantage of it and became a hero.
2. FA Cup Winner vs. Manchester United (2007)
Remember that Wembley magic?
In the dying moments of the 2007 FA Cup Final, Didier Drogba broke the scoreless draw to give Chelsea the victory over Manchester United.
As usual, Frank Lampard made an incredible pass to spring Drogba free, and the Ivorian tapped the ball past Edwin van der Saar to give Chelsea the victory.
It was one of Drogba's greatest moments, and it came against the greatest of opponents.
1. Champions League Winning Penalty vs. Bayern Munich (2012)
With the Champions League trophy up for grabs, a Chelsea player walked up for the fifth and final kick. He slipped, and Chelsea lost to Manchester United.
If Didier Drogba hadn't received a red card in 2008, that above story never would've happened. Instead, he foolishly slapped Nemanja Vidic and was sent off. As a result, John Terry had to take a penalty, and we all know how that ended.
This year, Drogba re-wrote that script.
With Terry on the bench this time, Drogba took the deciding penalty. Without blinking an eye, Drogba buried the shot low and to the left. Manuel Neuer guessed wrong, and Chelsea were crowned European champions.
Given the magnitude of the finish and poise he took it with, this penalty was Drogba's greatest moment at Chelsea.