Jose Mourinho: I have an emotional link to Didier Drogba

Jose Mourinho says he has an emotional link with Didier Drogba that goes "further than football" from their time together at Chelsea

didier drogba
Didier Drogba won two Premier League titles under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea Photo: The Sport Review

didier drogba

Jose Mourinho says he has an emotional link with Didier Drogba that goes “further than football” from their time together at Chelsea.

Drogba was an integral part of Mourinho’s Chelsea team between 2004 and 2007 as the Blues won two Premier League titles under the Portuguese’s stewardship.

The Ivory Coast forward is set to line up against Mourinho’s Real Madrid when Galatasary travel to the Bernabeu for the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie on Wednesday night.

And the 50-year-old revealed he has a special relationship with the striker ahead of the game.

“Dider Drogba was a great player for me, a great friend and someone that will stay in my life forever. We created emotional links that go further than football,” Mourinho told a news conference on Tuesday.

“[Wesley] Sneijder and Drogba have been important players for me in the past but tomorrow they will be my friends, not the players in my team.”

Real Madrid v Galatasary: Pre-match facts

• Real Madrid have won two and drawn two games in the Champions League at home this term and overall have won 13 and lost just one of 16 European home outings during Mourinho’s three campaigns in charge.

• Mourinho has a 100 per cent record in Champions League quarter-finals having won at this stage with Porto (2004), Chelsea (2005, 2007), Inter Milan (2010) and his present club in 2011 and 2012.

• Galatasaray last visited Spain’s capital for a 1-1 draw at Atletico Madrid in the 2009-10 Uefa Cup round of 32, a tie they eventually lost 3-2 on aggregate.

• Mourinho worked with Drogba at Chelsea from 2004 to 2007 and together they won Premier League titles in 2005 and 2006. Drogba played alongside Ricardo Carvalho and Michael Essien at Stamford Bridge.

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