Chelsea to stand by Didier Drogba after sixmatch European ban
A new three-year contract offer from Chelsea is on the table for the 31-year-old Ivorian, who has just 12 months left on his present deal and had appeared to be set to leave Stamford Bridge, and talks will take place once he returns for pre-season training on 8 July, a week later than the rest of the squad because of his international commitments. Chelsea had expected Drogba to be treated harshly by Uefa although the punishment is, slightly, more severe than expected. Drogba indicated, in discussions with the club on Wednesday night, that he intends to stick by his pledge following the FA Cup Final that he would accept whatever sanction Uefa passed. In addition to Drogba's ban, Jose Bosingwa was punished for four matches, one of which is suspended for his comments after the match. Chelsea were fined 100,000 euros for the improper conduct of their players and for the throwing of missiles by their supporters at the end of the fiery contest. The club was yesterday given 72 hours to respond to the punishment but a formal response is expected later today. It had been thought that Drogba would be sold by club owner Roman Abramovich, who is believed to have been appalled by his behaviour after the Barca match, but the Russian billionaire has, following consultations with his advisers and talking to the new manager Carlo Ancelotti, relented. Bosingwa's future is in greater doubt given Chelsea's interest in re-signing Glen Johnson, although they have lost out to Liverpool for the right-back after he made it clear he did not want to return to Stamford Bridge. Both Drogba and Bosingwa were found guilty of making insulting comments after Chelsea were knocked out of the competition following a series of controversial decisions by referee Tom Henning Ovrebo who turned down a number of strong penalty appeals.
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