‘He changed the game in the Premier League’ – Chelsea legend receives massive praise

Didier Drogba
Photo: AFP

Former West Ham striker Dean Ashton has hailed Blues legend Didier Drogba for changing the game in the Premier League.

Signed up from Marseille in 2004, the big Ivorian was an instant hit at Stamford Bridge, as he bullied defenders in the Premier League.

Drogba ended up winning four Premier League titles, and scoring 104 goals in 254 league appearances.

For Ashton, Drogba changed the game in the Premier League.

He said on talkSPORT: “I always thought, especially towards the end of my career, Didier Drogba came to the Premier League and I instantly thought… damn it.

“I can’t do that. Now teams are going to want to play that way. Teams are going to expect their centre forward to do what he did, he did everything. Absolutely everything.

“He was big and strong, and quick, he had great ability. He could hold the ball up and play, run the channels, he could get on the end of a clearance and make something out of it, intelligent in possession, and could score goals.

“There’s no way I could do that. There was a period at West Ham where I came back from injury and got back in the side, Alan Curbishley was the manager, and he wanted to play with one up front.

“I hardly played. Carlton Cole and Bobby Zamora played that role way more than me because he wanted a player that could do all of that. They were better than me at that.

“I had different attributes, when you had two of you you could maybe split that and maybe have one that had one strengths and one that had the others.”

Drogba responded with a post on social media: “Thank you Ash.

“Had to be able to do different things to adapt to the Premier League level of expectations.

“I Became a different player from what I was in France.”