Jose Mourinho has laid down – for now – the rumours regarding Fernando Torres’ future at Chelsea. After being left out of the quarter-final defeat against PSG, Mourinho challenged Torres by asking indirectly if he was ‘real striker’. The £50 million was left on the bench in favour of winger Andre Schurrle. Even after he came on with 30 minutes remaining, Torres had little impact on the match.
Speaking ahead of Saturday’s match against Stoke City, Mourinho said:
“Yes, he has a future. Obviously everybody wants to improve and we want to improve, that’s normal and basic.
“He has a contract, he’s a good professional, he works hard for the team and brings positive things to the team. Obviously we want him to score more goals, obviously he wants to score more goals, it’s not just me that wants it, he wants it.
“During his time at the club he’s had moments, some of them important moments. But with long periods performing, sometimes in and sometimes out, he hasn’t had a lot of stability in his performances.”
These are confidence inspiring talk nonetheless, but they may have come a little too late for Torres. Nobody would have wanted to be at the end of the criticism after the match. It seemed like Mourinho had singled out Torres and laid the blame on the Spaniard for the defeat.
Admittedly, the Spaniard has failed to reach any sort of form during his three years at the club. We would have surely been competing for the league title had he been the consistent goal scorer that Chelsea thought they had signed.
Torres has performed well in European matches of late and it was disappointing not to see him start. Yet, his performance in the 30 minutes of the second half suggested that Mourinho had little option.
Chelsea have been linked with Diego Costa and Radamel Falcao in the last few months. It is almost certain that we’ll make a move for one of them. Bayern Munich forward Mario Mandzukic has become the latest transfer target for Chelsea. The 27-year-old could cost around £20 million after he is set to lose his starting spot to Robert Lewandowski in the summer.