It’s three years now since Fernando Torres left Anfield for Stamford Bridge for a fee of £50 million – a British record. His tenure at Liverpool was quite successful. In his four years on Merseyside, the Spanish international scored 65 goals in 102 league games. Not a bad ratio. He’s played almost the same amount of league games for Chelsea and hasn’t even scored a third of what he achieved at Liverpool. So the question is: what next for Fernando Torres?
There was a time when Torres was one of, if not, the world’s best striker. It was the former Spanish manager Luis Aragonés (who sadly passed away last Saturday) that showed him a lot of faith, making him a regular in the national side while dropping national hero Raul in the process.
Torres was now firmly Spain’s no. 9 while David Villa was given the sacred no. 7 jersey of Spain. Now many reckon that current coach Vicente Del Bosque needs to do what Aragonés did with Raul with some of the current players – starting with Fernando Torres.
Indeed he’s not the greatest striker in the world anymore. He’s not the greatest striker in the Premier League and for some time now he has even being having difficulty getting his name on the starting sheet for Chelsea. I’m sure you will agree that El Niño needs a brand new start.
Chelsea manager José Mourinho insists that Torres remains part of his plans. But with Samuel Eto’o ahead of him, what realistically could the star gain from starting most games on the bench? With the World Cup mere months away, Torres will likely be nervous as to wonder if he will make it into Del Bosque’s squad.
Forwards Álvaro Negredo, Cristian Tello, Roberto Soldado and the frankly brilliant and in-form Diego Costa will all be eager for that no. 9 jersey of La Roja. Is time running out for Torres?
I hope El Niño gets a second wind as I have always been a fan, going back to his Atlético days. Because on his day Fernando Torres can be one of the greatest players to watch. It’s a shame we haven’t seen that magic in a while. I for one hope he finds his mojo again – I just can’t see it being in a Chelsea jersey.
Follow Rob Smith on Twitter (@robsmithireland)