Didier Drogba launched his Major League Soccer career in style here Saturday, scoring a hat-trick on his first start for new club Montreal Impact in a 4-3 win over Chicago Fire.
The former Chelsea striker opened his goalscoring account on 21 minutes before Chicago battled back into the contest to take a 3-2 lead early in the second half.
But two typically clinical Drogba strikes just after the hour mark capped a memorable evening for the 37-year-old Ivory Coast legend, who celebrated by presenting his jersey to a fan after the match.
“The crowd was amazing,” Drogba told reporters. “And, you know, this Man of the Match [trophy] that they gave me at the end, it’s for them. I give it to them.”
Drogba’s treble was the classic striker’s full house — one goal scored with his left boot, another with his right and another from his head.
It left interim Impact coach Mauro Biello purring with pleasure. “What can I say? What a performance from Didier,” Biello said.
“He’s such a committed person. He’s won everywhere.
“He came here with a great spirit, with such a will to win. And we saw that tonight.”
Nevertheless Drogba was not happy with his team’s display in the win.
“For me, it’s not a good result,” Drogba said. “The most important thing is that you get the three points, but when you look at the game itself, you know we’ve got a lot of things to change and to work on. There’s always room for improvement in this team.”