Drogba: I can get better and better

Ivory Coast striker Didier Drogba has been in sensational form for

Chelsea this season, but he is determined to continue improving.

The 31-year-old was exceptional again in Chelsea’s 4-1

demolition of Championship side Cardiff in the FA Cup fifth round

at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

Drogba put the Blues in front with his 23rd goal of the

season and laid on the second for Germany captain Michael Ballack

as the holders reached the quarter-finals.

The Blues were given a scare when Michael Chopra cancelled

out Drogba’s opener before the interval, but Chelsea’s class told

with second-half goals from Ballack, Daniel Sturridge and

substitute Salomon Kalou.

Drogba is currently in the hunt for the ‘Golden Boot’ with

Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney but, even if he beats his

adversary, the striker is already thinking about doing even better

next term.

“No matter what I do this season, next year when I return my

objective will be to do better than that,” declared Drogba.

“If people say: ‘He has had a fantastic season’, I will try

to do better because that’s the way I am.”

Chelsea’s dressing room spirit has been tested on and off the

pitch in recent days, by tabloid talk about the private lives of

captain John Terry and left-back Ashley Cole and defeat at Everton

last Wednesday night, where Cole suffered a broken ankle.

Terry missed the win over Cardiff because he was in Dubai

with wife Toni following his alleged affair with Vanessa Perroncel

– the ex-girlfriend of ex-Chelsea team-mate Wayne Bridge.

The defender was stripped of the England captaincy by

national coach Fabio Capello in the wake of the allegations of

infidelity and was at fault for both of Everton’s goals in the 2-1

loss, apologising to fans on Saturday for his double gaff.

While Terry remains Chelsea captain with the full support of

manager Carlo Ancelotti, Drogba believes the Blues have strength in

numbers and leaders across the field.

He also believes the indomitable spirit of his team-mates is

the envy of rival teams and inspires individuals to perform.

“We have a lot of strong characters here which is good

because we challenge ourselves,” said Drogba.

“Because we are all leaders, we always have to be the best –

it is not easy but I think we are doing quite well.

“Personally, when I am talking about experience in the squad,

I’m talking also about the confidence my mates give me.

“The togetherness of the team is amazing. No matter what

happens we stick together and that’s the real strength of Chelsea

and I think a lot of teams want that.

“When you get closer to the end of the competitions, you

start to get more excited, that’s how it is.

“Each season is different and I don’t know what to expect but

the one thing I can say is that I will try to be there when the

team will need me.”

Drogba’s goal against Cardiff was his fourth in as many games

since his return from a disappointing African Nations Cup campaign

in Angola in January, where the Ivory Coast – featuring Kalou and

Drogba – were knocked out in the quarter-finals.

Drogba, however, insists there is more to come.

“We didn’t expect to come back so early from the tournament,”

he added.

“I am still not back from it properly.”