Didier Drogba has praised the career of Petr Cech following the goalkeeper’s announcement he would be retiring at the end of this season.
Drogba, who made his Chelsea debut on the same day as Cech in 2004, may have been the man who scored the decisive penalty when Chelsea were crowned European champions in 2012, but the Ivorian has always recognised the magnitude of the role Cech played as we overcame Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena.
When Drogba was honoured by the Football Writers’ Association in 2015 for his services to the English game, Cech was invited to speak about the striker’s career and, in return, the Ivorian recalled Cech’s exploits in Munich.
‘There are so many times when people talk about me scoring the winning penalty in Munich, but I always tell them there would have been no winning penalty if you weren’t there,’ Drogba told Cech at the event.
‘In the final I scored the equaliser, but you made some great saves that night and I don’t think you get enough credit for what you did. Strikers are the ones people talk about but, for me, you are the one who won us the final. That’s why I had to run to you when I scored the penalty, I didn’t run to you by mistake.’
Following Cech’s announcement that he would be retiring at the end of this season, Drogba paid tribute to the career of his former Chelsea team-mate on his personal Instagram page, hailing his ‘good heart, professionalism and winning mentality.’