Didier Drogba says that Chelsea’s away goal in their 1-0 win at Benfica could prove ‘critical’ in the outcome of their Champions League tie (Blues 1/8, Benfica 9/2 to qualify for the last four).
The two sides met at the Estadio da Luz on Tuesday and in a tactically tight match, Salomon Kalou scored the only goal of the game to give Roberto Di Matteo’s men a vital victory.
Drogba was an unused substitute in Portugal, with the Italian coach opting to use Fernando Torres‘ ability to run in behind defenders instead of the Ivorian’s famed power in the air.
It proved the right decision, as the Spaniard rewarded his coach’s trust by helping to create Kalou’s winner, which gives the West Londoners a vital lead going into next week’s second leg.
Despite not getting on the field, Drogba was delighted with his team-mates’ performance, but says the Blues’ (8/1 Champions League outright) players cannot get complacent ahead of the return match at Stamford Bridge.
“It is a great result,” the 34-year-old told L’Equipe. “The most important thing is that we have scored that goal away from home.
“But we have a lot of respect for Benfica. We will take the return leg very seriously.”