Fire sign Drogba, trade him to Montreal Impact
Former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba has signed for Chicago Fire, who have subsequently traded him to Montreal Impact.
Speculation had been rife about Drogba's next destination after leaving Stamford Bridge, with the man himself confirming earlier this month that he was in talks with an MLS outfit.
On Monday, it was announced that Fire had acquired his services, "acquiring general and targeted allocation money" from Impact in exchange for Drogba.
Fire completed that deal at the same time as signing former Toronto FC designated player Gilberto.
"With regards to the trade, we felt this move was in the best interest of our club," a statement from Fire head coach and director of soccer Frank Yallop read.
"We received a significant amount of allocation money from Montreal, giving us the spending flexibility to find another player in this window or down the line.
"We respect Mr. Drogba's professionalism throughout this process and wish him luck, but we are excited to welcome Gilberto to the club and move forward toward the MLS Cup play-offs and the U.S. Open Cup semi-finals."
"It's an honour to welcome Didier Drogba to the Impact," said Impact president Joey Saputo.
"From the first conversation I had with him, I felt that he really wanted to play in Montreal. This is one of the biggest days in club history and his arrival to the club will be beneficial in every aspect."
"He's demonstrated his qualities as a striker at the highest level in Europe," added technical director Adam Braz.
"His instinct in front of the goal, his experience and his leadership are all attributes that will help the team on the field."