Jose Mourinho says Chelsea hero Didier Drogba “deserves the best reception” when he returns to Stamford Bridge with Galatasaray.
The 35-year-old scored exactly 100 league goals for the Blues over a glittering eight-year career in west London. Drogba celebrated three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and two League Cups before signing off in style; his final kick in Chelsea colours clinching the Champions League after many years of European heartbreak.
Following a brief spell with Shanghai Shenhua the Ivory Coast international moved to the Istanbul giants in January 2013, now managed by Roberto Mancini.
Drogba has scored 11 times for Galatasaray this season, helping them overcome Juventus to take their place in the knockout stages of the Champions League.
Mourinho, who spent £24 million to bring Drogba from Marseille in 2004, expects it to be a special atmosphere when he steps out at Stamford Bridge on March 18.
However, all niceties will go out of the window for 90 minutes as the 2012 winners continue their quest for a second European Cup; the one trophy that got away from Mourinho during his first spell at the helm.
“I think it will be a special moment for Didier and for the Chelsea fans when he comes back on to the pitch at Stamford Bridge. He deserves the best reception – he is a hero here for what he achieved and he is a great guy as well as a great footballer,” Mourinho told Chelsea magazine.
“So there will be a lot of love when that happens, but we also have a game to play – we know that Didier will be giving his best because we know the professional he is, but we will also be giving everything to progress. For sure, it is going to be something amazing to experience."
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