Chelsea striker Didier Drogba has hit back at Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez ahead of tonight’s Champions League semi final, 2nd leg at Stamford Bridge.
Drogba came in for criticism over his conduct following last week’s first leg, which finished 1-1. Indeed, at one point in the match, he was jokingly described by the ITV commentary team as ‘having the lowest pain threshold in the Northern Hemisphere’.
At the weekend, Benitez criticised the Ivory Coast international, revealing that he has a compiled four-year dossier of examples that he believes show Drogba going down under challenges too easily.
However, speaking to French newspaper L’Equipe, Drogba dismissed the claims saying:
Benitez was a manager I respected a lot. He has really disappointed me.
Until now, I found him very competent and also classy. A top boss would never go so low to attack a player.
Perhaps he is looking for something to destabilise us before the match. If he wants me to stay on my feet, maybe he should tell his defenders to stop hitting me.
In the first leg, (Jamie) Carragher and the other one (Martin Skrtel) didn’t stop. And not just with me. I finished the match with bruises everywhere.
Last year, I broke a rib against Liverpool in the Champions League semi-final. Strangely, that escapes the statistics of Benitez.
It will not affect me. If I fall, I will always get up. The best response I can give will be on the pitch.