Drogba happy at Bridge despite exit thoughts

October 16, 2008

Didier Drogba insists he is happy at Chelsea despite admitting he has wanted to leave every year since he joined the Blues.

The Ivory Coast striker, currently out of action with an injury to his right knee, says he has wanted to quit the Blues every summer since joining in 2004.

His future was under the spotlight again earlier this year when there were strong rumours the 30-year-old would be rejoining former boss Jose Mourinho at Inter Milan.

In his autobiography, the English version of which was launched at Stamford Bridge earlier today, Drogba pulls no punches about his desire to move on.

But now Drogba maintains he has found happiness under new boss Luiz Felipe Scolari and wants to remain a Blue.

``Yes I am glad I stayed,'' said Drogba. ``Last year I said I wanted to leave and every season I have said I have wanted to leave but I am still here.

``This is the club which suits me best. This is the only club where I won all the titles I have now. I am happy to be here and to stay with my friends.''

Drogba is still a few weeks away from full fitness but is relieved the latest injury to his right knee, sustained against FC Cluj, is not as bad as he first feared.

Drogba escaped ligament damage and is now working to get back to action as soon as possible.

But he also revealed he was never fully fit during last season's campaign when he underwent an operation on his left knee.

He missed large chunks of the season under Mourinho's replacement Avram Grant.

``Last year I was struggling to be 100%,'' admitted Drogba. ``I was never 100% fit last year even if I produced some good performances. The second one, this latest one, was unlucky. But I am not so worried because thank God, it is not as bad as it could have been.

``Injuries are part of our job and I know what I can bring to my team-mates and I know what I am capable of. I hope I will be injury free for the rest of the season and for the next years.''

Drogba's red card in the Champions League final against Manchester United in Moscow last May prevented him from taking a penalty in a dramatic shoot-out.

John Terry missed the spot-kick that would have earned Chelsea their first Champions League triumph and when Nicolas Anelka also missed, United went on to make it a hat-trick of European triumphs.

Drogba has more regrets about losing the final than being red-carded.

``You have a lot of regrets when you go to the final and lose it,'' added Drogba.

``I have more regrets about losing the final than being sent off. But the team was affected by the sending off and we lost on penalties.''

Drogba is determined to win more glory with Chelsea but he also has one eye on the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

``I think this World Cup in Africa is very important for the continent, not just for me and the Ivory Coast. This is going to be the best chance for an African team to win the World Cup but it is not going to be easy.

``Ivory Coast still have to qualify to go to the 2010 finals and it is going to be a big battle for us. Every African country has players abroad and they have improved a lot. They still create problems even though you are supposed to be better than them.''