Chelsea 1 Sunderland 0: Villas-Boas full of praise for Torres
Chelsea boss AndrÃ© Villas-Boas was full of praise for Fernando Torres after the Blues edged to victory over Sunderland
AndrÃ© Villas-Boas hailed Fernando Torres’ display after Chelsea were made to work hard for their narrow victory over Sunderland at Stamford Bridge.
The Spanish striker played an integral role in the Blues’ eventual winner in the 13th minute, when his brilliant overhead volley smashed off the crossbar and allowed Frank Lampard to fire home from close range.
“He’s been playing well,” Villas-Boas told the BBC. “His movement has been improving and he’s been feeling more confident. It’s good to seem him at his best. I think the crowd did a good job to give him confidence and [that] helps a player to feel well on the pitch.”
Lampard’s third goal in three games keeps Chelsea in fourth place in the table, six points behind third-placed Tottenham, who were held to a 1-1 draw by Wolves on Saturday.
Despite falling behind early on, Martin O’Neill’s visitors kept battling and could have drawn level late in the second half – but Nicklas Bendtner and substitute Craig Gardner both spurned glorious chances to snatch a point in west London.
“Sunderland created their opportunities and we created ours,” continued Villas-Boas. “There were good opportunities for both teams and it could have been 2-0 or 1-1.
“It’s fair to say that it was a competitive match and I think to break the run of form of Sunderland is quite good. With the weekend’s results it proved a good three points today.
“We were under pressure from Sunderland’s opportunities [but] we managed to more or less keep our shape and our discipline to hold on for an important result. We were dominant in the first half and were more on the counter on the second half.”
Villas-Boas also confirmed that defender Gary Cahill has passed a medical with the Blues and is now on the brink of completing his £7m transfer from Bolton Wanderers. He added: “Gary passed his medical and should be our player soon.”