Drogba hails attacking Blues

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Published: Wednesday 26th November 2014 by The News Editor

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Didier Drogba is enjoying life back at Chelsea – until he comes up against the Blues’ wealth of attacking talent in training.

Like his manager Jose Mourinho, Drogba stopped short of comparing the current Chelsea side to that which he starred in under the Portuguese during their first spell together at Stamford Bridge.

But the experienced Ivorian does believe the class of 2014 is easier on the eye – as Tuesday night’s 5-0 thrashing of Champions League opponents Schalke proved.

Progression into the last 16 of the competition as Group G winners was confirmed in style in Gelsenkirchen as John Terry, Willian and a Jan Kirchhoff own goal had the visitors three goals up at the break.

It was punishing for former Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo, now coach of Schalke, as he faced the club he led to Champions League success in 2012.

Drogba, who scored the decisive penalty in the shoot-out victory over Bayern Munich that night, came off the bench to score a fourth and make the fifth as Chelsea showed a ruthlessness against Schalke which has seen them go unbeaten in all competitions so far this season.

But it is the ability to couple that killer instinct with flair and style that Drogba believes could set this team apart from its predecessors.

“I think Chelsea have the chance to say we had great teams in terms of spirit, a machine in terms of hard work and efficiency,” he said.

“This one is efficient too, but with the attacking players, the passing rate and quality of passing is higher. We have more creative players, which makes it maybe better to look at.

“In both ways, the most important thing is to win titles, so this team will only be good if this team wins titles and big trophies. Then we will be able to compare it with previous ones.”

He added: “I was a defender once. You know sometimes I try to face them in training and after that I have to go to the massage room and get some treatment because they’re that good.”

The 36-year-old may require a rub-down after his exertions in training but he will be hoping to rack up more competitive minutes as Chelsea face fixture congestion heading into December.

Six games in 18 days start with the Premier League leaders travelling to Sunderland on Saturday, with Diego Costa likely to retain his place in attack after Mourinho confirmed he was replaced as a precaution in Germany.

But Drogba may well start just his sixth game since returning to west London when Sporting Lisbon visit for what is now a dead-rubber Champions League tie for the Blues.

“We are very happy to have qualified,” he added.

“We have one more game to play and we are going to wait for the draw and prepare for the second phase of the tournament.

“I don’t know if other teams will want to play us. They will have to play well against us to beat us, just as we will to continue this campaign.

“With this result we can rotate a little bit and rest some players and also keep other players involved. As the manager said, we are going to need everyone because you can’t achieve good results without the whole squad.

“The spirit is good and we will try to continue like this.”

Published: Wednesday 26th November 2014 by The News Editor

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