Didier Drogba lost a controversial bid for the presidency of the Ivory Coast Football Federation after he was disqualified after the first round of voting at the electoral conference on Saturday.
The former Chelsea star received just 21 votes in a three-way race, with the other two candidates, Yassine Idriss Diallo (59) and Souri Diabatti (50), more than double his tally. Diallo won a second round to determine the presidency of the Federation.
Drogba’s candidacy was a matter of contention last year. He tried to stand for election but did not receive the needed support from clubs and other interest groups, such as the Players’ Association and the Coaches’ Association, whose nominations he needed to get on the ballot.
Then FIFA intervened to dissolve the federation, placing control of Ivorian football under a “normalization committee” while the regulations and electoral law were rewritten.
She let Drogba, 44, stand up but while he received plenty of encouragement from the public, he did not have much support within the Ivorian football community.
Earlier this week, he withdrew from a live television debate with the other candidates two hours before it was scheduled to be broadcast on television, according to a statement on state radio. The discussion continued without him.
Ivory Coast will host the Africa Cup of Nations final next year.
On the bright side for Drogba, he was recruited into Premier League Hall of Fame Last week, in the 2022 class, alongside the likes of Wayne Rooney, Patrick Vieira and Peter Schmeichel.