Fernando Torres always gives 100% for Chelsea, says Rafael Benítez
Rafael Benítez insists that he has no concerns over Fernando Torres' attitude at Chelsea and is backing striker to find form
Rafael Benítez insists that he has no concerns over Fernando Torres’ attitude at Chelsea amid reports the Spanish striker has told his team-mates he wishes to be back at Liverpool.
A below-par Torres, who has now not scored in four games, was substituted in the second half of Chelsea’s defeat by Swansea City in the Capital One cup in midweek.
Benítez revealed that the Spain striker had been suffering with a stomach bug but was forced to play due to Demba Ba picking up an injury in training ahead of Wednesday’s game at Stamford Bridge.
And the Blues interim boss insists he has been impressed by Torres’ attitude since he has taken charge in west London.
“I’m really pleased with the attitude of Fernando,” said the Chelsea boss.
“I have no idea [about the reports claiming he’d rather be at Liverpool]. Fernando is training well.
“When a player is trying to give his best, for me, it’s enough. I can see Fernando training every day and he’s giving 100 per cent in every session.
“The positive thing in England is that you give time to the managers. We’ve been here for seven weeks and we’ve played around 14 games.
“Fernando has improved a lot. Last week he had a stomach bug but he has been training and playing because the team needed him.”
Torres’ Chelsea form has come under intense scrutiny following his £50m move from Liverpool in January 2011.
And although Benítez admits that he understands the criticism levelled at the forward, he is backing him to find his form in the weeks to come.
“As a professional, when you are not doing as well as everyone is expecting, you are criticised,” he said.
“If Fernando starts scoring goals again it will be easier and the fans will appreciate this.
“Because the club paid big money [for Torres] everyone was expecting a relationship between money and goals.
“Fernando is a top striker but when the team was not playing well it was more difficult for him to have good chances.
“I think that he can score goals again and have more confidence.”
Asked if he could deploy Torres and Ba together for Saturday’s trip to Stoke City, Benítez added: “Yes they can [play together].
“If you have both available, you have more options and you can manage in a different way.”