On Tuesday night ITV 4 broadcasted two documentaries. The first of which was a fascinating insight into one of the fiercest rivalries in the Premier League era, that between Patrick Vieira of Arsenal and Roy Keane of Manchester United. The second was even better. It was an instalment of their “Life Stories” series and their focus this time was on Didier Drogba.
No Chelsea fan will ever forget that moment in Munich when Didier Drogba won us our inaugural Champions League. It is a moment that will remain a part of club folklore and he deserves all the plaudits that have come his way. This documentary started with that moment and then quickly switched back to Drogba’s roots in the Ivory Coast. Without wishing to go into too much detail the stories about his early life in the land of his birth and then France, where he moved as a boy, really tell the viewer a lot about his character.
We continue to learn more about Drogba’s early footballing career in France; his injuries, his late development and finally his success with Marseille. We’re also given a real insight into Drogba’s effect within his own country and what work his foundation is doing.
I really don’t want give away too much or talk excessively about it because I firmly believe it is something all Chelsea fans should watch, it is a brilliant piece of film making. What I can say is that it re-iterates a lot of things we knew about Drogba but also challenges a few of our pre-held beliefs. Drogba is a phenomenon; there is no other way to describe him. As a footballer and as a man there are few parallels and the work he does away from the field is truly astounding. It’s only an hour, make time for it and sit down and watch it, you won’t be disappointed.
Throughout it all there were clips from Drogba at his best and it was impossible not to reminisce about when we had the deadliest striker in the world leading our front line. At his peak he was the perfect mixture of pace, power and technique. He was a bulldozer, capable of the sublime and he inspired fear in every opponent.
How we long for a player like that. This season the striking responsibilities have been shared between Fernando Torres, Samuel Eto’o and Demba Ba. Hardly striking options to strike fear into the hearts of our opponents and they pale in comparison to some of the other options our rivals can call upon. Torres is a shadow of his former self and the £50 million price tag surrounding his transfer would appear to weigh very heavily on his shoulders. Of all our strikers he has shown the most promise this season but even still he isn’t going to get 20 league goals in the season.
Samuel Eto’o appears to be on his way to America at the end of the year and in all honesty this signing was nothing more than a panicked reaction to not being able to sign Wayne Rooney. He’s slowly starting to adapt to the English game but he too is nothing like the player he was in his pomp. Ba was another panic buy in some respects. When it became clear that Daniel Sturridge wanted to leave we knew we couldn’t cope with just Torres for the rest of the year hence why Ba was brought in. Neither have impressed this season and having a player of Drogba’s calibre would be of huge benefit to us now. Heck even having Drogba now would be a big improvement. Letting him go was perhaps a huge mistake, he’s still showing that he has plenty left in his locker and he’d still be better than any of the current incumbents.