All Hail Drog the King!
One of Africa’s finest footballers of his generation, Didier Drogba currently plies his trade with Montreal Impact the Canadian Major League Soccer after an illustrious career playing in Europe. Drogba was born in Abidjan on March 11, 1978.
Following Côte d’Ivoire’s qualification for the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, Didier’s voice became louder as he appealed to the warring factions in the country civil war to lay down their arms. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) appointed him a Goodwill Ambassador in January 2007. The same year, he founded the Didier Drogba Foundation “to provide financial and material support in both health and education to the African people.”
After initially announcing plans to build one hospital in Abidjan in 2009 with the £3 million fees from his Pepsi endorsement, Drogba changed his mind on the realization that one hospital will be too difficult for everyone to reach. In 2013, he announced instead through his foundation that five (5) specialized clinics in children and women health would now be built in the following cities in the country: Yamoussoukro, San Pedro, Man, Korhogo, and Abidjan.
In 2010, Didier Drogba was listed by Time magazine as one of The 100 Most Influential People in the World, joining the likes of Muhammad Ali and Michael Jordan as one of the few sportsmen to grace the front cover of the magazine.
Winner of several football honors, Drogba is a devout Catholic and happily married to Diakité Lalla from Mali. The couple have 3 children together.
Afro Tourism salutes a true African hero, city icon and living legend, Tébily Didier Yves Drogba! “Well done!”
If you are in Abidjan, do visit the Didier Drogba Foundation at Cocody and make a donation. Or you can make a donation online: http://www.thedidierdrogbafoundation.com/make-donation.html
Did You Know?
- Didier Drogba was born in Abidjan on March 11, 1978…
- He was sent to France at the age of 5, but returned to Abidjan after 3 years because he was homesick.
- After launching his football career in France, Drogba played one season with Marseille before English Premiership side, Chelsea FC of London snapped him up for £24 million in July 2004.
- Drogba was crowned African Footballer of the Year twice; in 2006 and 2009. He has also won several other individual awards, while Chelsea fans voted him the club’s greatest player ever in October 2012.
- He is the all-time leading goal scorer for the Ivorian national team, Les Éléphants which he captained from 2006 to 2014.
- Didier retired from the national team after the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, after making a total appearances of 104 games for Les Éléphants, and scoring 65 goals.
- So far, Drogba has won 15 football trophies: 3 with Turkish side Galatasaray S.K. and 12 with Chelsea FC which include, three (3) Barclays Premier League (2004-05, 2005-06 and 2009-10), four (4) FA Cup, and the UEFA Champions’ League 2011-12.
- In the final of the UEFA Champions’ League 2011-12, he scored a late equalizer to tie the game at 1-1 and drag it into extra-time. In the penalty shoot-out that followed, he took the 5th kick to decide the match and win his and Chelsea FC’s first UEFA Champions’ League.
- Drogba left Chelsea in June 2012 and joined Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua. He moved on in January 2013 to Galatasaray S.K of Turkey, and returned to Chelsea FC in July 2014 for another spell.
- In a recent study carried out by Opta for British Eurosport (com) Drogba was named the best ever African player in the Premiership. He is the only player on the list with over a 100 goals. Also, his 55 assists so far is 20 more than the second placed player.
‘Niyi David explores the beautiful and enthralling continent of Africa with Afro Tourism, capturing colorful memories of places, cultures and events in words and images.