Fire mum on Drogba reports, tie New England
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The Fire tied the New England Revolution 2-2 on Saturday night, but the big story is it’s looking like Didier Drogba could be slipping away.
Multiple reports Saturday said the Fire and the Impact are discussing a trade that would send Drogba’s rights to Montreal. The Fire own the discovery claim on Drogba and have reportedly offered him an 18-month contract which could be worth around $3 million annually to make him a Designated Player, but talk of a deal with Montreal for compensation would indicate Drogba’s preference to continue his career with the Impact.
Late Wednesday night, coach Frank Yallop said the Fire were expecting an answer from Drogba in the next 48 hours. As of now, the Fire haven’t shared publicly if they’ve gotten a response from Drogba. If they have received an answer, they haven’t divulged what it is.
That didn’t change after Saturday’s game, when Yallop was asked if he’s looking to trade Drogba’s rights to the Impact.
“I have no update on that right now,” Yallop said. “I just finished the game so I haven’t spoken to anybody.”
As for any involvement from the league in this affair? Pretty much the same response.
“There’s no real update until there is one,” Yallop said. “I’ve not spoken to anybody. I just finished the game. There might be an update tomorrow, but as of right now there’s nothing to add.”
At that point, a team spokesman told the media “all right guys. Questions maybe about the match here.”
As for that game, the Fire started DPs David Accam, Shaun Maloney and Kennedy Igboananike together for just the fourth time and first since May 30. Despite playing without Mike Magee (knee/birth of a child) and Jeff Larentowicz (neck), that represented a step closer to full strength for the Fire (5-11, 4, 19 points), who have only one win in their last nine MLS games and will stay bottom of the league.
After falling behind 1-0 on a 28th minute goal by New England’s Lee Nguyen, the Fire tied the game moments before halftime when Maloney converted a penalty kick drawn by Accam. Razvan Cocis gave the Fire a 2-1 lead in the 75th minute, but two minutes later Kelyn Rowe took advantage of an error by Adailton to easily convert on what looked to be a harmless cross.
“Just to give it straight back to them was just so disappointing,” Yallop said.
That might be nothing compared to Drogba.
Note: Retired Fire defender Gonzalo Segares was honored before the game. Segares made 231 regular-season appearances with the Fire and was a part of their 2006 U.S. Open Cup winners.