Back in 2015, it was reported that the Chicago Fire had obtained discovery rights for Chelsea legend Didier Drogba. For a brief amount of time, it seemed like one of the Kings of Stamford Bridge was about to don the red and white, but would he of have been the King of Bridgeview?
But first, let’s do a bit of history.
Fresh from a Premier League win with Chelsea, the then 37-year-old Drogba was looking to head elsewhere for a new challenge. He’s already done China and Turkey so what else can he can he do at this point? The MLS of course. By 2015 many European stars such as Steven Gerrard, Andrea Pirlo and one of Drogba’s former teammates, Frank Lampard has come stateside. And MLS were paying those players well so, of course, why wouldn’t Drogba head over to North America.
Somewhere around this time, the Chicago Fire obtained discovery rights for Drogba. For those who are confused about discovery rights here is a brief rundown. A scout roams around the land in a creepy fashion stalking out a potential player that would be great for their club. The scout stumbles upon a hidden soccer field. Peeking behind the gate, the scout creepily mumbles to themselves, “Yes, that’s the one, I lay dibs on him!” And that is basically MLS discovery rights in a nutshell. The club basically has dibs on the player they “found” and should the player want to sign with the club, they get top priority.
But Drogba didn’t want to join the Fire. He wanted to wanted to be close to “home,” and Montreal provided that for him as it was one of the few French-speaking areas in the continent. So the Fire traded his rights to the Montreal Impact in exchange for some MLS funny money.
Prior to Drogba joining the Impact had 11 losses and four draws in 23 games. The Fire at the same time had 12 losses and five draws. Both teams were scraping the bottom of the Eastern Conference. Drogba joined the Impact on matchday 24 and scored a hat-trick....against the Fire no less. He later scored seven more that season and led them to the Eastern Conference semi-finals.
But what if Drogba wanted to go to Chicago, would he have made an…..Impact? (I’m so sorry for that pun – I think I’m learning from JBG.) [Editor’s note: don’t blame me for this nonsense, this is all on you RJ. - JBG]
Yes, but the Fire would of have still missed out on the playoffs by a game or two.
The club was such in a disarray back then. The midfield at times – or all the time looked lost. Shaun Maloney didn’t care, and Razvan Cocis wasn’t really much of a leader. And as for the defense? Another disjointed mess.
The front would of have been a thing of beauty though. The pace of David Accam mixed in with the Drogba’s eye for goal would of have been a sight to see out on the pitch.
But like they say, hindsight is 20/20 and who knows what would of have really happened if Drogba decided to join the Fire.
What do you think? Do you think Drogba would of have helped us out? Let us know in the comments below.