Didier Drogba has signed with Montreal Impact, the MLS side have confirmed.
The Impact secured Drogba’s services after completing a trade with Chicago Fire for the right to negotiate a free transfer with the Ivorian star, who has agreed an 18-month contract.
The Canadian side sent Fire allocation funds – consisting both of Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) and general allocation money – in order for the club to drop their own claim on the 2012 Champions League winner.
“It’s an honour to welcome Didier Drogba to the Impact,” president Joey Saputo told the club’s official website. “From the first conversation I had with him, I felt that he really wanted to play in Montreal. This is one of the biggest days in club history and his arrival to the club will be beneficial in every aspect.”
Drogba, 37, has been a target of Major League Soccer for several years, with MLS sources confirming toGoal that he turned down a $7.5 (€7) million-a-year deal to sign with the league back in 2012 before he accepted a lucrative offer to move to China that ultimately collapsed.
— Impact de Montréal (@impactmontreal) July 27, 2015
The Fire were the first MLS team to negotiate with Drogba and had a standing offer in place before the Impact became aware of Drogba’s availability and approached him about a move.
Drogba, who ended his second spell with Chelsea at the end of the 2014-15 season, follows former Blues team-mate Frank Lampard, ex-Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard and Italy icon Andrea Pirlo in moving to the US top flight this summer.