Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has described striker Fernando Torres' contribution during his time at Stamford Bridge as "so-so - but not so bad as people sometimes try to say".
The returning Blues boss said Spain international Torres, who joined Chelsea from Liverpool for £50 million in 2011, had not delivered the sort of performances people would have expected of him.
Throughout his time as a Chelsea player, Torres has struggled to replicate the devastating form he showed at Liverpool, even when reunited with former Anfield mentor Rafa Benitez last season.
But although he has been linked with a summer move from west London, he has vowed to stay and fight for a place in Mourinho's side next season.
The coach said he believed owner Roman Abramovich - widely seen to have been the driving force behind the acquisition of Torres - would let him have the final say on the player's future.
"Torres so far is so-so," he said. "Somebody could expect more because of his potential, because of what he did before. But [it is] not so bad as people sometimes try to say. There is a balance."
He also denied that another expensive striker, Andriy Shevchenko, had been imposed on his squad by Abramovich during his previous spell in charge.
"Shevchenko? It's not true the owner forced him on me," he said. "Never, never during my time did the owner interfere in the basic things of the manager - training sessions, team selection, the profile of player I want to bring in.
"Do you want to know the truth about Shevchenko? We wanted to buy Samuel Eto'o. We wanted Eto'o, and the owner was more than ready to do everything to bring him here.
"He was the player I wanted. Why? Because Eto'o was the only player I could play with Didier Drogba, changing the system for two strikers.
"In the end, Barcelona said: 'We don't sell, forget it. Not at any price.' The owner did everything to get him, but it was not possible. After that, we went to other options and got to Shevchenko. I was happy with him."