That's right people. Didier Drogba, our resurrected assassin, has been named the Chelsea Offside readers' player of the season. And, as predicted, it was an incredibly tight vote.
Readers' player of the season voting results (2009-10):
Total votes: 222
1. Didier Drogba 36.49% (81 votes)
2. Frank Lampard 30.18% (67)
3. Florent Malouda 16.22% (36)
4. Branislav Ivanovic 10.36% (23)
5. Nicolas Anelka 2.7% (6)
6. Other answer 1.8% (4)
7. Ashley Cole 1.35% (3)
8. John Terry .9% (2)
Others receiving votes: Petr Cech (2), Michael Ballack, Ciudini (yes, Ciudini)
Congratulations to the mighty Drogs on a much-deserved award. But - and I'm not the only one who noticed this early in the voting process - how wonderful is it to see so many deserving Blues amongst the candidates for such an honor? It really proves just how superb the 2009-10 season was for Chelsea Football Club.
Now, on to our honoree.
I don't think there can be an argument against Didier Drogba. Our large Ivorian was simply phenomenal in 2009-10. In the simplest terms, this season was Drogba's finest in six years at the club.
Drogs' 37 goals this term (in 44 appearances) were his best return not only in his time at Chelsea, but in the entirety of his professional career. Twenty-nine of those goals arrived in the Premier League - in just 32 appearances. All this despite missing the month of January to represent the Ivory Coast at the African Cup of Nations. I cannot imagine what kind of numbers we might have seen had this not been an ACN year. Perhaps he could have rivaled the productivity of the world's best, Lionel Messi (47 goals in 53 appearances).
Even still, Drogba's average goals per match (.84) is only slightly less than that of Messi (.89). Pretty amazing.
Stats of note: 1. A hat trick at home to Wigan on the final day of the season allowed the mighty one to earn his second Premier League Golden Boot. 2. He scored six goals in six matches against the so-called top four. 3. He fathered your unborn child.
With all this on the CV, it was no surprise Drogba was named the club's player of the season by the fans. He had this to say after receiving that award: "When I came here it wasn't easy for me, I made a lot of mistakes and they always tried to help me. My only desire was to love this club and win a lot of trophies. This is the happiest I have ever been and I want this moment to continue for years and years."
I wonder what he'll say when he gets the word on this little piece of hardware. Either way, well done, Didier.