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Drogba tells of love for Champions League

8 April 2013 16:54

Galatasaray striker Didier Drogba says he has a unique bond with the Champions League as his side prepare for their clash with Real Madrid.

The Ivorian won the trophy with Chelsea in 2012, scoring the winning penalty in the final, but left the club for Shanghai Shenhua the following summer.

However, he returned to Europe's top competition in Galatasaray's 3-0 loss in the Spanish capital last week and says he was delighted to be back.

"I have a special relationship with the Champions League - it is a trophy I had to wait a long time to touch," the 35-year-old told UEFA's official website.

"For nine seasons, whether it was with Marseille or Chelsea, we chased this trophy. To be able to lift the cup was the highlight of my career. It is a real joy for me to be back in the Champions League, and especially to hear its anthem at the beginning of each game."

And Drogba, who scored twice in Galatasaray's 3-1 win over Mersin Idman Yurdu on Saturday, has stressed that he is delighted with life in Turkey.

"I must say that I am very happy here," said the Ivorian.

"I have found a club that is ambitious, with a great project. At some point they want to win the Champions League. It is a great choice for me.

"I wanted to rediscover the passion I experienced in Marseille. I want to be part of this adventure, part of this challenge. This is something very exciting.

"The club are settled on the European stage; they have won the UEFA Cup and now want to aspire to something even better. I think this is part of the destiny in my football life. That's fate."

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Info

Competition
UEFA Champions League
Date
9 April 2013
Kick-off
20:45
Half-time
0 - 1
Full-time
3 - 2
On aggregate
3 - 5
Venue
Türk Telekom Arena (Istanbul)
Attendance
49975

Goals

0 - 1
7' Cristiano Ronaldo
 (assist by S. Khedira)
E. Eboué 58'
(assist by W. Sneijder) 
1 - 1
W. Sneijder 70'
(assist by S. Sarıoğlu) 
2 - 1
D. Drogba 72'
(assist by N. Amrabat) 
3 - 1
3 - 2
90'+3 Cristiano Ronaldo
 (assist by K. Benzema)

Lineups

# Player Bookings
25
27 45' 58'
5
26
14 20' 70'
4
10
11
8
12 72'
19
Coach: F. Terim

Substitutes

# Player Bookings
53 90+4'
55
9
7
22
35
67
# Player Bookings
17 89' 90'
9
18
1
12
21
29

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