Chelsea striker Didier Drogba has insisted that he wasn't to blame for Luiz Felipe Scolari's sacking as Blues manager.
Scolari blamed Drogba, as well as Michael Ballack and Petr Cech, for his dismissal last week after the Chelsea stars reportedly voiced concerns about their boss to the club's owner Roman Abramovich. Scolari was dismissed by Abramovich just seven months into his reign at Stamford Bridge, but Ivorian star Drogba is adamant he made no attempt to get the Brazilian removed.
"When Scolari started blaming individuals, then that was bad. To name one player as to blame for what happened in a squad of 24 is wrong," Drogba told The Sun. "I was shocked he said that. How can one player be responsible for not winning for so many weeks and losing points?
"This is not an individual sport. When you win games everyone is happy and enjoys it together. But when we lose we have to lose together too. And if I had as much power with the owner as has been said, then Mourinho would still be here, no? If I had that power! I have respect for Scolari as a man and a coach but I was not involved in any discussions with the owner."
Drogba believes Scolari's replacement Guus Hiddink is the ideal man to stabilise the squad after a rocky period. "Hiddink is just what Chelsea need right now," he said. "When you manage a team like Chelsea, you need to unite the team when things are rough - not divide them. Chelsea is a family - and a family needs to be together."
The 30-year-old has been linked with a move away from Chelsea several times in the last 18 months, but he is keen to see out the rest of his contract with the west London team.
"I am happy with everyone here and want to be a Chelsea player," Drogba said. "I want people to stop talking about me going back to Marseille or going to Inter Milan. When Jose Mourinho left I was unhappy but that is past now and I am allowed to change my mind.
"I want to stay until the end of my contract. I love the fans. My family love it here and we want to stay. There have been no talks about extending my deal but there is time for that. I would stay if they offered me a new deal. I know that first I need to show I am still the Didier Drogba this club knows."