Stamford Bridge

Next Game

Chelsea v Fiorentina

Wednesday, 05 August 2015, 20:00

Int Champs Cup North America

Wembley

Last Game

Arsenal 1 - 0 Chelsea

Sunday, 02 August 2015, 15:00

FA Community Shield

Solo role taxes Torres - Benitez

Rafael Benitez believes the form of forward Fernando Torres has dipped due to Chelsea's over-reliance on the Spaniard.

Last Updated: 23/02/13 at 14:17 Post Comment

Fernando Torres: Struggling to show his best form

Fernando Torres: Struggling to show his best form

Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez believes the form of forward Fernando Torres has dipped due to the club's over-reliance on the Spaniard.

Torres, who moved to Stamford Bridge for £50million in 2011, has scored just once in his last 14 appearances for the European champions and the Chelsea supporters appear to finally be losing patience with the 28-year-old.

Chelsea currently sit third in the Barclays Premier League but can close to within a point of second-placed Manchester City if they can win at the home of the champions on Sunday.

Frank Lampard, Juan Mata and Eden Hazard have been the players scoring crucial goals for the Blues recently with Torres struggling to score.

Before the arrival of Demba Ba from Newcastle in the January transfer window Torres was carrying the responsibility as Chelsea's main goal threat all by himself with Daniel Sturridge, who has since moved to Liverpool, injured and Romelu Lukaku on loan at West Brom.

And it was this run of games, with the goalscoring burden fully on his shoulders, that Benitez feels has led to a barren spell in front of goal for his compatriot.

"Fernando has been playing 10 games as the only striker we had," he said.

"The other teams have three or four strikers. Now we have two, so we have to use both of them. The number of games and the congestion and the time you have to recuperate players, it's not easy.

"You have to have 11 players as fit as possible with fresh legs, and the right balance tactically. We have to manage."

Benitez continues to support the forward who was so potent when the two were at Anfield together as player and manager and believes the goals will start to flow again soon after being impressed by his display in the 1-1 Europa League draw with Sparta Prague on Thursday.

"I can see him improving," Benitez said of Torres.

"His pace and his positioning were much better. A goal and he will have more confidence. If he'd scored his first chance (against Prague), everything would be different. We have to have confidence with the way he trains and approaches the games, because that is quite positive.

"How many goals has he scored this year? Fifteen. He was scoring goals before (this run). We can praise the manager if he's scoring, or blame him if he's not.

"If you are telling me that he was not there then we'd have a problem. But he was there. He beat the defender, something he hadn't done before. He did it against (Arsenal defender Thomas) Vermaelen, so you're seeing he has the pace similar to what he had before."

Benitez has a good record as a manager against City but reckons this is a stronger side than he faced during his Liverpool tenure.

"City are a great team," he said.

"They've improved in the last few years, spent money, good players, great manager, and a good atmosphere around the club.

"It's more difficult to beat them. In the past we were at the top, with a strong mentality and good team, and that's why we maybe beat them. But they don't lose too many points at home now. They are stronger."


Get £110 from your free £10 bet with Sky Bet if Chelsea win 1-0


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

think that puts all doubts over Benteke's quality to bed. Can he do it after receiving the ball to feet, in the box, totally unmarked, on a warm, sunny afternoon in Swindon? Oh yes he can! This year is definitely Liverpool's year. YNWA.

rationalmanc
WATCH: Benteke's debut screamer

A

ll very well selling all midfield and strikers but unless we bring anyone in that is better than what we had then it will be a terrible transfer window in my view. Sorted out the defense but our midfield and striker options look very light.

bigo
Spurs Halfway To The Perfect Summer

L

ove it when Jose accuses others of being defensive, cynical and playing to win. If I was Wenger, I'd get that quote laminated and framed - surely the biggest compliment he's ever received from Mourinho. You've got him riled Arsene - you're relevant again!

suarez_blind
Jose rues pitch and weather after defeat

Footer 365

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has 'difficult questions'

Arsenal centre-half Per Mertesacker says manager Arsene Wenger has a lot of "difficult questions" to answer.

West Ham forward Enner Valencia ruled out for up to 12 weeks

West Ham forward Enner Valencia has been ruled out for up to 12 weeks with a leg injury.

Jordy Clasie says he'd have rejected move to Man United in order to join Southampton

Jordy Clasie claims he'd have rejected Man United to sign for Southampton - saying it's "better to start lower and finish higher".

Mail Box

There's A Lot Of Anger About TV...

...and how much you have to pay - largely for games you don't actually want to watch. Many of you are forced to go illegal. We also have mails on Chelsea, Angel di Maria and...

Not Just A Friendly. This Had Meaning...

Arsenal fans are very excited about beating Chelsea (don't remind them about last year), while there is criticism for BT and a football fan tired of being screwed by TV...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company