Drogba to miss MLS matches on artificial turfs

Montreal, March 4 (IANS) Montreal Impact striker Didier Drogba will be missing parts of the Major League Soccer (MLS) season as the club will not risk playing him on artificial surfaces due to his knee problems.

“Didier won’t be available for the beginning of the season while we’re training or playing on (artificial) turf,” the club’s technical director Adam Braz was quoted as saying by goal.com on Friday.

“It’s too big of a risk for us to take with him with his knee. As we saw last year when we played (on artificial turf) in New England, his knee really swelled up and he really had a tough time recovering afterwards for the playoffs,” he said.

The 38-year-old will, therefore, be missing four of Impact’s first five matches which also includes the lung-opener in Vancouver on Sunday.

Drogba could make his debut at FC Dallas at Toyota Stadium on March 19, in a match that will be played on grass.

Braz also said that because Impact have to train on artificial turf for sometime, they are looking for alternatives for Drogba to practice on.

“We’re not going to comment on where he’s going,” Braz said.

“Right now we’re looking at different scenarios and different options to find the best environment for him to train and get fit and be ready for the game in Dallas.”

Speaking about his condition, Drogba said: “It’s a discussion we already had last year because I had to play on (artificial) turf in New England and Orlando, so there’s nothing new.”

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