Premier League return by insisting he is happy with Shanghai Shenhua.

A wage-based dispute was believed to have unsettled the Ivorian, who only joined his new club in June, which alerted the likes of Liverpool who were believed to be exploring the possibility of a loan move.

However, Drogba now appears to be happy in China, stating that he expects to be with the club for the start of the new Super League season in March:

“I hope next season I can start again from the beginning with Shenhua.” He told the Shanghai Morning Post.

Shenhua endured a turbulent last campaign, finishing ninth in the 16-team league. Boardroom struggles and management changes plagued the team’s year, but Drogba still managed to impress, netting eight goals in his 11 appearances.

The 34-year-old put the team’s poor showing down to a lack of preparation:

“Because I joined relatively late, I didn’t prepare with the team early in the season, so our results were not very good.”

Liverpool were rumoured to be interested in bringing the powerful forward back to the Premier League, but his weekly wages, estimated to be around £300,000, were a major issue.

Drogba plays alongside ex-Blues’ team-mate Nicolas Anelka, who moved to Asia in January.