Didier Drogba reiterated his belief that the reunion of his former manager Jose Mourinho with his old club Chelsea would be "a good combination" as he made a pre-season return to London.
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Speaking after his club Galatasaray's 1-0 win against FC Porto in the Emirates Cup on Saturday, the Ivory Coast striker said Chelsea face a challenge to claw back the ground on Manchester United and Manchester City but added that he expects the Blues to be in the shake-up for the Premier League title.
"Everybody knows what I think about him (Mourinho)," Drogba said, "and especially about him (coming) back to Chelsea. It's good for the club. It's a big challenge for him and for the club as well, but a great manager with amazing players — normally it's a good combination."
That blend will see Chelsea return to being serious title challengers, Drogba thinks.
"Of course," he said. "This is Chelsea, and they always try to win titles and are always in the last four or so for winning titles. It's a good habit."
Drogba was keen to stress that the Blues have more than the returning Mourinho to propel them forwards, however, praising their efforts last season in a campaign that was at times fraught.
"Last season, Chelsea beat Manchester United in a few games, so I think we have to give credit to what they did last year," he said. "They had a long season, with a lot of games. This season is going to be different, but I will follow them from afar."
Having helped Fatih Terim's side to the Champions League quarter-finals — where they played out a thrilling clash with Mourinho's Real Madrid — after arriving in January, Drogba has high hopes the Turkish champions will build on that in the coming season.
"We had a tough pre-season where we worked a lot and I think you can see that the legs are still a bit heavy. But (hopefully) we can do what we did today again tomorrow, because we really want to win this tournament. At the end of the day it's a cup to win."