Didier Drogba wanted back at Marseille by Didier Deschamps

08 December 2010 12:59
Coach Didier Deschamps is hoping that Didier Drogba's love for Marseille will inspire him to play for the club once more before he retires.

The Ivory Coast striker will return to the Stade Velodrome with Chelsea to face his former club, knowing he will be given a marvellous reception by the fans.

Drogba, now 32, spent just a year at Marseille, scoring 18 Ligue One goals, plus another 11 in Europe in 2003/04 after arriving from Guingamp.

True blue: Didier Drogba returns to his former club this week

His goal return made him a hero among the Marseille fans and theChelsea ace has often spoken of finishing his career back at StadeVelodrome.

Chelsea have already finished top of Group F, with Marseille throughin second, so there is little but pride riding on tomorrow's game.

Deschamps, though, will just be glad to see Drogba back at his former stomping ground.

'Every coach appreciates Drogba,' said Deschamps. 'If you know a coach who doesn't rate him, maybe you can introduce them to me.

'He's someone everyone would want to have in their team. He's aplayer of a very high calibre who had one great season at Marseille andthe supporters took him to their hearts, which isn't easy.

Top Drog: The Chelsea man spent just a year on the south coast of France with Marseille

'But tomorrow he's an opponent who, as he's said before, is veryattached to Marseille and maybe one day will wear the shirt again. Idon't know if that's feasible or not, who knows.'

Deschamps insists he will not experiment with his side tomorrow andalthough he is aware that Chelsea are in a mid-season slump, theMarseille coach still expects a difficult encounter.

Chelsea have won just one of their last six league games, though they remain unbeaten in Europe with five wins out of five.

'I won't experiment tomorrow,' said Deschamps. 'Maybe I will try torest some players but I need to pick a very competitive team becausethis is a big team.

'Maybe with Saturday in mind, I'll take some players off. I don'twant to lose players to injuries. I won't put anything at risk in agame where there is no pressure.

'It's true that Chelsea are in a difficult period. Every team has difficult moments in their seasons.

True Blue line: Didier Deschamps played for Chelsea at the turn of the century

'The results haven't been good even if the performances have beenmostly good. They were unlucky with some late goals. I don't think thatChelsea's form is the same as in the first game between us.

'The team won't be the same as in the first game between us but theyhave quality players and I know Carlo Ancelotti well, I think he'llfind good solutions so I don't have any worries about their potential.'

Meanwhile, Marseille goalkeeper and captain Steve Mandanda is relishing the match.

'It's my first Champions League game without pressure, we've prepared well and it'll be a decent game,' said Mandanda.

'We know we're going to play a big team tomorrow. Maybe for the fansit's like an exhibition match but for the players it's still animportant game. There's not too much pressure but it matters to us.

'Whether it's Drogba in front of me or whoever it is, my aim will bethe same, to keep a clean sheet. I'm not focusing on Drogbaespecially.'  

 Drogba: I miss Marseille! Chelsea star opens door for return to France Chelsea star Drogba gears up for emotional return to Marseille stadiumChelsea manager Ancelotti can't sleep as his Blues nightmare continues CHELSEA FC

Source: Daily_Mail

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