Montreal Impact sporting director Nick De Santis declared Didier Drogba “the perfect fit” for his club after signing the former Chelsea striker.
Under MLS’s unique transfer rules, Drogba first joined Chicago Fire on Monday but was immediately traded to the Impact for “general and targeted allocation money”.
Having only qualified for the MLS play-offs in one of their three previous seasons, De Santis made it clear that Drogba’s history of success – four Premier League titles and the 2012 UEFA Champions League with Chelsea, plus the Turkish Super Lig with Galatasaray – would be key for Montreal.
But the 47-year-old former Canada international also spoke glowingly of how Drogba will adapt in Canada’s second-largest city.
“When we started thinking about our city, he fits in perfectly,” De Santis told reporters.
“Multicultural, he speaks English, he speaks French… his African descent, he’s played in England for the biggest club – so when you think of our city and how multicultural it is and how well he is known worldwide, it was the perfect fit.”
The Impact sit sixth in the Eastern Conference standings after their 1-0 win over Seattle Sounders on Saturday, just inside the play-off positions but level on points with seventh-placed New York City and eighth-placed Orlando City.
De Santis is convinced Drogba can inspire Frank Klopas’ team to surge up the table and make an impact in the MLS post-season.
“That’s all I’ve heard [about Drogba], what he brings to a team in the dressing room, all the positives, his demands – he’s a winner and he’s going to want to win and I just think that’s going to feed off everyone around the club,” De Santis said.