Fernando Torres completed his switch to AC Milan on a two year loan deal to end his torrid time at Chelsea and starts a new chapter in his career in Italy.
Having been un-favoured for large parts of last season, and early signs showing, with the arrivals of Didier Drogba and Diego Costa, he would be used sparingly this season, it is unsurprising to see the Spanish striker eager to break away from what has been an unsuccessful spell at the Bridge.
The Chelsea and former British transfer record has had some pivotal moments in the period of his stay, most notably both the Champions League and Europa League victories, but it’s that chance spurned wide of a merciless empty net at Old Trafford hat perhaps typifies his time with the club.
Divided are the opinions of his time at Chelsea. It wasn’t long ago when Torres was formidable and an unforgiving striker in the red of Liverpool, but his demise seemed to be triggered by his move to the Bridge.
His rounding of Victor Valdes at the Nou Camp to seal the progress to the European cup final in 2012, will be cherished and rendered immortal, as will his goal to help lift the Europa League trophy the following year. But otherwise views will stoop to use the winning of a corner kick that resulted in Didier Drogba’s equaliser in Munich as justification for his contribution to his team.
The problem is when paying 50 million for a striker is expectation to be returned with goals, and they have been too few and far between for the sum of money, the player of his quality and the size of a club like Chelsea.
The goal tally for the blues equated to one every 3 games or £1.1 pounds per goal. But under closer inspection, looking at when goals were scored and who against, the crucial and much needed goals run thin, whereby the majority have appeared against inferior opposition.
Suggestions have also been made that Torres had a role in the merry-go-round go round of managers during his time at the club. Ancelotti found himself with a player he didn’t even want, forced to play in his second season at the helm to help justify the outlay of £50 million. AVB and Di Matteo were entrapped in a similar predicament and even Rafa Benitez was thought to be drafted in to elevate the World Cup winners’ form.
Another blockade erected by the purchase of Fernando Torres is the sacrifice in preventing other players. Arguably Daniel Sturridge and Romelu Lukaku opportunities at Chelsea were spurned which forego their eventual sale.
His courage and effort on the pitch was often appreciated, with the dogged work rate and eagerness to help his team. Hi attitude and commitment towards through his bad patches were commendable and reciprocated with support of his fans, but sometimes in football that just isn’t enough.
Undoubtedly Torres played a part in Chelsea’s most memorable night to date, and a year later cemented the club’s European pedigree, but whether the departure of the former number nine is greeted with fondness or relief depends on which angle his Chelsea career is looked at.