Friday, February 08, 2013


Warm welcome: Drogba received a similar reception to Wesley Sneijder after he arrived in Turkey last month
Ivory Coast captain Didier Drogba received a warm welcome as he arrived in Istanbul having agreed to join Turkish club Galatasaray in the January transfer window.

The former Chelsea star arrival was delayed by his participation in the Africa Cup of Nations.

However, Drogba's  hopes of winning the tournament for the first time were scuppered when Nigeria put the Ivorians out.

Drogba stepped off the plane this afternoon and held up a flag with the club colours and crest printed on it before meeting up with head coach Fatih Terim.

New chapter: Didier Drogba held up a Galatasaray flag after arriving in Istanbul this afternoon
When the 34-year-old arrived at Galatasaray's training base, he told Galatasaray TV: 
'I've met with the coach, but it’s not the first time we’ve met. He just remembered me from when Cote d’Ivoire national team played against Turkey.

I’m really happy to be here for me as it’s a new challenge, a new part of my life. I will do my best to be successful for the club.'
Mobbed: Didier Drogba is surrounded by photographers after arriving in Istanbul

Drogba will link up with compatriot Emmanuel Eboue, who joined the Turkish champions from Arsenal in the summer of 2011.
Frenzy: Galatasaray fans hold up a flag in tribute for the striker after his arrival at Ataturk Airport

Another former Chelsea striker who took the same path from Stamford Bridge to China has also returned to Europe.

Nicolas Anelka joined Shenhua in January last year, but decided to transfer to Italian giants Juventus, making his move to the Serie A champions last month.

Hero's welcome: Wesley Sneijder was paraded in the city after his arrival at the same airport last month
Former Inter Milan playmaker Wesley Sneijder received a similarly rapturous welcome when he arrived in the Turkey last month, and Drogba expressed his delight at joining the Dutchman having left Chinese team Shanghai Shenhua.

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