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21 Agustus 2008

Drogba Out Till October?

The Ivory Coast star, who missed Chelsea's entire pre-season with a knee problem, was only expected to be out for the first couple rounds of the season, but Vahid Halilhodzic's latest comments on the matter suggest otherwise.

"Drogba will not be back before a month, a month and a half," Halilhodzic was quoted as saying by Sky Sports News.

"He has started to run but he will not be available for the match against Mozambique (a 2010 World Cup qualifier, September 5)."

Whether the apparent setback in his bid to regain fitness will force the Blues to dip into the transfer market remains to be seen.

The fact is that Luiz Felipe Scolari has precious few forwards to call upon. Claudio Pizarro has left to join Werder Bremen on loan, while Andriy Shevchenko is expected to follow suit to Milan.  At least Salomon Kalou has by now returned from Olympics duty with the Ivory Coast, but the burden of expectation up-front will continued to be placed squarely on the shoulders of the in-form Nicolas Anelka, who bagged a goal during the opening day romp against  Portsmouth.

Derek Wanner,