Improving Torres is poised to hit top form again, insists Chelsea’s Benítez
Chelsea interim boss Rafael Benítez insists that he expects Fernando Torres to hit top form for the Blues in the coming weeks
Rafael Benítez insists that he is pleased with Fernando Torres’ performances in recent weeks, despite the Chelsea forward managing only one goal in his last 14 games.
The £50m Spain forward, who has netted 14 goals in 43 appearances this season, extended his goalless run during Thursday’s Europa League clash with Sparta Prague.
But despite the 28-year-old failing to get on the scoresheet once again, Benítez says that the striker’s contribution is still proving to be a valuable asset for the Blues.
“Obviously as a manager you want your players – and especially your strikers – scoring a lot of goals but Fernando is doing a great job for the team,” said the Chelsea interim boss.
“Yesterday he had three or four chances that he didn’t have before and it’s because he was training hard and in the right position at the right time.
“I am convinced that he was doing a great job for the team. He’s doing well and will score goals.
“When you analyse strikers, it’s easy to say: ‘how many goals?’ but when you play with 11 players they have to do their job – all of them.
“Part of Fernando’s [job] is to create space and put players in good positions with his movement. Mata is scoring goals, Hazard is scoring goals. For Hazard’s goal [against Sparta Prague], Fernando was running inside and created a little bit of space for him. It’s not his job but it’s part of his job and he’s doing it really well.”
Benítez, who is preparing his side for a trip to defending champions Manchester City on Sunday, is backing Torres to find the net and soon rediscover some of the confidence that appears to have deserted him of late.
“I can see him improving,” he added. “Yesterday he was working very hard again. His pace was much better, his positioning was much better, so I can see him improving.
“Obviously a striker has to score goals to have more confidence but yesterday he had one or two chances, [so] we could be talking about two goals and everything could be different.
“We have to have confidence [in him]. The way that he trains and approaches the games is quite positive.”