Chelsea striker Didier Drogba will leave the club this summer after failing to agree a contract extension.

The Ivory Coast international scored the winning penalty in the Champions League final last weekend, the final act of an eight-year career at Stamford Bridge.

Drogba was seeking a two-year extension to his current deal, due to expire at the end of the season, however the 34-year-old will now leave the club he joined from Marseille in 2004.

Didier Drogba
Drogba will leave Chelsea are eight years.

"I wanted to put an end to all the speculation and confirm that I am leaving Chelsea," he said.

"It has been a very difficult decision for me to make and I am very proud of what we have achieved but the time is right for a new challenge for me.

"As a team we have accomplished so much and have won every single trophy possible. Saturday was a very special moment for everyone at the club and for all the fans, and I am very proud to have played my part in bringing many trophies to this club, which has been my home for the last eight years.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone at the club especially Roman and my team-mates, many of whom have become very close friends and will be my friends for life.

"I would also like to say a very special thank you to the Chelsea fans who have shown me so much love and support over the years.

"I wish the club all the best and continued success for the future - you will always be in my heart."

Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay said: "Didier is undoubtedly a Chelsea legend and will always be part of the Chelsea family. He is certainly leaving on a high after Saturday night but he feels the time is right for a new challenge.

"Of course Didier has contributed so much to all of Chelsea's recent successes. He has been a consummate professional during his entire time here and as one of the natural leaders in our squad he has been an inspiration to a lot of our younger players.

"We have known for some time that this outcome was likely but Didier and the club only made a final decision on that in the last couple of days, because for obvious reasons neither Didier nor the club wanted to distract focus away from the Champions League Final.

"The talks were amicable all the way through and we wish him all the best for the future. He is welcome back to Stamford Bridge at any time - either as a player or as a guest of ours."

Victory in the Champions League final against Bayern brings the curtain down on Drogba's trophy-laden eight-year spell at The Blues.

After moving to the club during the stewardship of Jose Mourinho, Drogba helped fire Chelsea to successive Premier League title wins, as well as the League Cup in his open two seasons.

Drogba scored the first goal in an FA Cup final at the new Wembley in 2007 against Manchester United in extra time, before being sent off against the same opponents in the following season's Champions League final.

The forward built his reputation on scoring on the big occasion for Chelsea, scoring eight times in eight finals, including the decisive goal in the FA Cup final's in 2010 against Portsmouth and 2012 against Liverpool.

However, he finished his tenure with Chelsea in ideal fashion, equalising three minutes from time in the Champions League final against Bayern before tucking away the winning spot kick in the penalty shoot-out, helping to deliver the first European Cup in the club's history.

With 157 goals, Drogba is fourth in Chelsea's all-time record goal scorers, behind Frank Lampard, Kerry Dixon and Bobby Tambling.