Chelsea news

Villas-Boas vows to boost Torres

December 16, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas insists he will make Fernando Torres one of the world's best strikers once again.

Fernando Torres
GettyImagesAndre Villas-Boas continues to have faith in Fernando Torres

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Villas-Boas went as far as to suggest he would be willing to tolerate another year of failure from the £50 million signing, rubbishing reports the Blues were considering selling Torres for £20 million when the transfer window opens in January.

Torres has scored just five goals for Chelsea since his January move from Liverpool, but Villas-Boas says the 27-year-old was "not for sale at any price", now or next summer. Indeed, Villas-Boas has made it his mission to ensure Torres returns to form, even if the striker's struggles continue until this time next season.

"I think so," Villas-Boas said. "This is a talent that is never in doubt. So we have to be very, very patient and I'm sure that we can turn this around.

"We'll have to continue to push. That's one of the prerogatives of the manager, to try to get the best out of everybody. It takes time."

Torres looks set to be given that time when Didier Drogba goes on African Nations Cup duty for the Ivory Coast in January. But with Drogba's recall having played a major part in Chelsea's revival in recent weeks, Villas-Boas must rely on Torres to not only rediscover his form, but deliver in terms of goalscoring.

"I think it comes with self-confidence and motivation and hitting the back of the net," he said.

"This was happening for Fernando in the first two or three months of the season. It has been Didier's run at the moment but we are pretty sure that Fernando will return strongly again.

"A player who wears the number nine lives for goals and a player who is a striker lives for goals. Didier and Fernando and (Romelu) Lukaku and (Nicolas) Anelka can tell you exactly that.

"Strikers are the most selfish people in the world and rightly so because they like to put the ball in the back of the net. This will help his motivation eventually.

"There's always that misconception in football, that when somebody's not working it is because at the other team where he was before, everybody played for him. I'm not sure if that's correct.

"Fernando has different things to offer from Didier and requires a different type of game. The team has the ability to adapt to the different circumstances. It was the same with Lukaku and the same with Anelka, and the same with (Daniel) Sturridge.

"Their natural, technical abilities require different types of game. Fernando is a very, very mobile player, likes the flanks - left flank - to come in, likes balls in behind, is a player who also comes short between the lines with good technical ability to lay off the ball to his colleagues."