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“I think next year will be my last season,” he admitted. “There comes a time when you have to stop. I need time for my other projects. It’s good to play, but at 39, it holds me back a bit.”
Provided Drogba does play into next year it means his professional senior career would have spanned an incredible 20 years. The forward made his debut for Le Mans in 1998.
He’s best known for his spells at Chelsea. In total he played 381 times for the Blues, scoring 164 times; Drogba also won the Premier League on four occasions, the FA Cup four times and netted the winning penalty when Chelsea beat Bayern Munich to win the UEFA Champions League.
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As of late, Drogba appears to have shifted towards off-field projects, and he made history when joining Phoenix Rising by becoming the first-ever player-owner of a football club. He’s netted 10 times in 14 league games for the club.
Per sports commentator Nate Abaurrea, it’s peculiar to see the great man playing in such modest venues:
Nate Abaurrea @NateAbaurrea
Drogba scoring goals at scarcely populated public parks on Sunday afternoons against MLS reserve teams with awe-struck subs is surreal. #USL https://t.co/vxFrRcxRFv
For Phoenix, having someone at the club who is so experienced and has won so many trophies is a massive boost as they seek to build a team that was only founded in 2014.
If he’s anywhere near as successful an owner as he has been a footballer, then his current club can look forward to exciting times.