EX-CHELSEA schemer Steve Sidwell has revealed just how devastated Jose Mourinho's sacking made the club's stars back in 2007.
The retired midfielder said it left the players "in pieces" and that Didier Drogba was in floods of tears when he heard the news.
The Ivorian striker had arrived at Stamford Bridge shortly after Mourinho – and played an integral part in the five trophies won by the Portuguese in his first spell in charge.
The 56-year-old was given the boot for the first time in September 2007 after a 1-1 draw with Rosenborg in West London.
And Drogba's former team-mate Sidwell revealed to JOE.co.uk just how affected the dressing room, and particularly the ex-Marseille man, were by the departure of the Special One.
Sidwell claimed: "I've been at a lot of clubs where the manager's gone.
"The hardest one I had was at Chelsea when Jose left. A lot of the players had been with him for a long time and it was a real family culture.
"We played Rosenborg in the Champions League. We drew or lost at home and then we got called in the next day.
"We knew something wasn't right and Jose got sacked that day.
"He came down. I'd only been there a couple of months and he was going round one-by-one saying his goodbyes, there was people crying.
"Drogba was in absolute pieces, like tears. I think everyone was taken aback by it.
"He went round to every individual and everyone was sort of broken by it."
Later that season Drogba was sent off as Chelsea lost on penalties to Manchester United in the Champions League final – before finding redemption by netting the winning spot-kick against Bayern four years later.
After spells with Shanghai Shenhua and Galatasaray , Drogba was eventually reunited with Mourinho when the Special One returned for his second spell at Stamford Bridge – and even added another Premier League winners medal to his collection.
Overall the 41-year-old scored 164 goals in 381 games for the Blues and will forever go down as a Chelsea legend.Chelsea share touching tribute video to Ray Wilkins who would have been 63 today ahead of trip to Wolves
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