Report: Didier Drogba retires to join Chelsea coaching staff

IMAGE, MATT KREMKAU FOR EMPIRE OF SOCCER

by RYAN BRISTER

It was fun while it lasted.

After a brilliant fall with the Montreal Impact, Didier Drogba is retiring as a player rather than fulfilling the second year of his Major League Soccer contract.

As first reported by L’Equipe, the 37-year-old striker has decided to return to Chelsea to start a coaching career. He is expected to join Guus Hiddink’s staff in the midst of an uncharacteristically bad season for Chelsea. Chelsea will have to compensate MLS for the move.

Reporters out of Montreal, however, claim the organization is in the dark regarding L’Equipe’s report, putting a question mark on the initial claims.

If the report remains true, his brings an end to Drogba’s storied career, which made him a legend for both Chelsea and his native Ivory Coast. He is the all-time top scorer for his country, and was a unifying force off the field for the national team. At Chelsea, Drogba played a part in four Premier League titles and a UEFA Champions League Championship, scoring 164 goals in 381 total matches with the club.. For the Impact, Drogba had 11 goals in as many games, but couldn’t lead the team past Columbus Crew SC in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

UPDATE: (5:08 PM)

Didier Drogba himself has come out on social media to pour cold water on L’Equipe’s report:


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