Belfast Telegraph

Friday 28 November 2014

Fernando Torres: I’ll fit in at Chelsea, and we can still win the title

Fernando Torres insists Chelsea are not out of the title race.
Fernando Torres insists Chelsea are not out of the title race.
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Fernando Torres of Chelsea looks thoughtful during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Fernando Torres of Chelsea shakes hands with Carlo Ancelotti manager of Chelsea as he is substituted while Kenny Dalglish manager of Liverpool looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Raul Meireles of Liverpool (C) celebrates with teammates as he scores their first goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Chelsea's Fernando Torres (left) has a his shot blocked by Liverpool's Jamie Carragher during the Barclays Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London.
Chelsea's Fernando Torres (centre) in action against Liverpool during the Barclays Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London.
Chelsea's Fernando Torres during the Barclays Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London.
Liverpool fans display a banner in the crowd saying 'He who betrays will always walk alone' during the Barclays Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London.
Chelsea's Fernando Torres during the Barclays Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London.
Chelsea's Fernando Torres (left) walks past manager Carlo Ancelotti after he is substituted off for Salomon Kalou (not pictured) during the Barclays Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London.
Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti on the touchline during the Barclays Premier League match at Stamford Bridge, London.
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Dirk Kuyt of Liverpool challenges Branislav Ivanovic of Chelsea during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Fernando Torres of Chelsea holds his face after a challenge by Daniel Agger of Liverpool during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: A banner welcomes new Chelsea signing Fernando Torres during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Fernando Torres of Chelsea shakes hands with former team mate Steven Gerrard of Liverpool prior to the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England.
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: John Terry of Chelsea talks to the officials after the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Ray Wilkins looks on from the TV studio during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Florent Malouda of Chelsea battles with Lucas of Liverpool during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on February 6, 2011 in London, England. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)

Fernando Torres admits his old club Liverpool caught Chelsea by surprise on his debut on Sunday afternoon.

But Torres has vowed the Blues will still have a say in the Barclays Premier League title race.

The £50million striker's much-hyped first appearance in a blue shirt failed to live up to expectations at Stamford Bridge, where Torres was eventually replaced after 66 minutes as the Reds went on to win 1-0 through a goal from Raul Meireles.

Liverpool, who continue to improve under Kenny Dalglish following a fourth successive league victory, deployed three central defenders which limited the impact of Torres and Didier Drogba, who were supported by Nicolas Anelka.

Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti has vowed to make the new system work, and Torres maintains the Blues will not be caught out again.

“It was very difficult, Liverpool played a good game, with three at the back,” Torres said.

“We were not expecting that and maybe they took advantage of that.

“I think the fair result was the draw, it was unfair to lose that game, but now we are looking forwards to the next game and will keep fighting until the end.

“There are a lot of points still to play for.”

Apart from an early chance when he latched onto a stray pass from Maxi Rodriguez and then fired his 20-yard effort over the bar, and a close-range effort blocked by Jamie Carragher, Torres rarely troubled the Liverpool back-line.

The travelling supporters barracked their former Kop idol at every opportunity, and took great delight in his substitution — chanting “You should have stayed at a big club” when he sat down in the Chelsea dugout.

Torres preferred to look on the positive welcome he received from the Stamford Bridge faithful.

“Obviously everyone wants to win, especially if it is their first game at home, but I will still have very good memories about my reception here and want to thank all of the Chelsea fans for that nice reception,” he said.

“The result was not the best, but we have to keep going and fighting until the end.”

Meanwhile, Spain striker David Villa has backed international team-mate’s decision to leave Liverpool and join Chelsea.

He said: “Liverpool are not enjoying a good year. I am totally convinced that his move to Chelsea will go well and he will succeed in London.

“It's been very difficult for him, but I'm pleased because I know he wanted to go there. He is very happy and I wish him well.”

World Cup winner Villa also said Andy Carroll, who Liverpool signed to replace Torres in a £35million deal, was “worth every penny”.

Villa, who cost Barca around £34.2million when he joined them from Valencia last summer, added: “Each year there are big transfers of this type. It's normal. All teams need to strengthen when they want to win things.

“Liverpool needed to reinforce after the sale of Fernando. They (Carroll and fellow new recruit Luis Suarez) are two great players who are worth every penny. I'm sure they'll be a hit with the fans.”

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