Former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba finally repaid a ten-year debt to Paris Saint-Germain’s Kylian Mbappé at the Ballon d’Or awards ceremony on Monday by taking a selfie with the player, a decade after snubbing the Frenchman.
Mbappé came sixth in the Ballon d’Or rankings on Monday evening, with Lionel Messi winning a record-breaking sixth Golden Ball. Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk finished second, while Juventus’ Cristiano Ronaldo came in at third, ahead of Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah.
Drogba, who was co-hosting the ceremony, presented Mbappé his trophy for coming sixth. The ex-Chelsea striker used the opportunity to make amends for refusing a ten-year-old Mbappé’s request to take a photo after the Blues’ controversial defeat to Barcelona in the Champions League back in 2009, when referee Tom Henning Ovrebo was the target of the Ivorian striker’s rage following a string of decisions that went against his side.
During the event, the Ivorian revealed, as quoted by Goal: “Ten years ago after Chelsea versus Barcelona, a child came to me and wanted to take a picture.
“That day I said no because of the disgraceful refereeing decisions. I learned that the child was Kylian Mbappé. I want to pay my debt now.
That match saw Chelsea miss out on the final of the Champions League in controversial fashion. The Blues drew 0-0 in the first leg at Camp Nou, and broke the deadlock at Stamford Bridge through Michael Essien to put themselves in the driving seat. As the match wore on, the west Londoners had four penalty claims waved away by referee Ovrebo, leaving the Spanish side in with a chance.
Barça ended up snatching it, with Andres Iniesta’s last-gasp goal booking their place in the final thanks to the away goals rule. Drogba protested after the final whistle and was caught shouting ‘it’s a f***ing disgrace’ into a camera. His reaction saw him handed a six-game ban and a fine to go with it.
As a result of his anger, Drogba refused to pose with a young Mbappé who had been in he crowd that night and had asked for a picture with him. However, ten years on, the World Cup winner now has a selfie with the Blues legend.