Thursday Oct 01, 2020. 14:00
Ivory Coast and Chelsea legend Didier Drogba will today be honoured with the 2020 UEFA President’s Award.
UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin will present Drogba with the award at the 2020-21 UEFA Champions League group stage draw in Geneva, Switzerland later this afternoon.
The former striker is being honoured thanks to his desire to help improve the lives of children in developing countries following his retirement.
“Didier is a hero to millions of football fans for his achievements throughout his glittering playing career. He is a leader – a pioneer. I will remember him as a player for his skill, strength and intelligence, but above all for his insatiable appetite to succeed – a trait which is just as present in his desire to help others off the field of play,” said Ceferin, as per UEFA’s website.
“The UEFA Champions League has become the greatest club competition in the world, partly due to our clubs being able to attract the best players from around the world. We have been lucky to have seen the likes of George Weah, Samuel Eto’o and Didier Drogba play at the very highest level. They in turn, have blazed a trail for African footballers and have given inspiration to a whole new generation who look to follow in their footsteps.”
Drogba is a true legend of the Champions League, having famously dragged Chelsea to their first European crown in 2012 when he netted a late equaliser against Bayern Munich and also scored the decisive penalty in the shootout.
“To have won a Champions League, to have played and scored for my country at a World Cup – these are things I could only have dreamed of when I was a child,” said Drogba, who grew up in both his homeland and France. “There are so many children in the developing world who have the potential to become not only footballers, but also doctors, teachers and engineers. This is why it is so important to help and support our youngsters to let them fulfil their dreams and aspirations.”