During Didier Drogba’s time at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea became one of the most intimidating teams in the Premier League. Mentored by a then swaggering Jose Mourinho and playing alongside other Blues greats like John Terry and Frank Lampard, Drogba and Co. struck terror and fear into the opposition, combining an indomitable defence with ruthless precision up front.
The mere sight of the west Londoners strutting about before the match made opposing side’s legs tremble and this is what really separated the Chelsea of 2000s with the rest of the Premier League – that powerful, lingering essence of “being”. Such was the aura that emanated from Mourinho’s team that allowed them to turn Stamford Bridge into a rock-solid fortress.
Yet while the Blues were known to be one of the most defensively astute sides back then, they also boasted one of the most dominating attacks in England. Building from a solid and stable platform of defending from the back, they took games by the scruff of the neck with the grit and tenacity of Drogba up front.
And this dogged determination at Chelsea’s frontline is what the ex-Blues favourite has advised current forwards Alvaro Morata and Olivier Giroud to practise. The two forwards’ struggles in front of goal are well-documented, with Eden Hazard carrying the scoring load so far, yet Drogba believes they can contribute in other ways, firstly, by imposing themselves in the pitch and cause all sort of nuisance against the opposition backline.
“I hope they will have the same success that I had. “When I came [to Chelsea] it wasn’t easy for me,” said the 40-year-old. “I think for strikers it is just a matter of confidence and do you want to improve your game and make yourself more difficult to play against. I think that’s what they are doing and I hope they will get more success because they deserve it.”
Coming from no less than Drogba himself, Morata and Giroud would do well to heed such advice.