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Villas-Boas plays down Torres brace as five-star Blues breeze past Belgians

THEY wore a fuchsia-coloured kit, their manager was called Mr Been, and they gave Chelsea their biggest-ever home win in Champions League football: if only all Andre Villas-Boas' European opponents were as easy to roll over as hapless Genk.

For Fernando Torres there were two goals, his first in this competition since April 2009, when he scored for Liverpool against his current club, and yet the £50m striker will probably wonder how he did not get a hat-trick.

This did not feel like the Champions League, it was more like the third round of the FA Cup, just without the dignity for the plucky underdogs.

Even Villas-Boas' legendary levels of politeness were stretched when he was asked to sum up the contribution of the Belgian champions, who have found themselves in all sorts of trouble since they won the Jupiler League last season.

Most of their championship-winning defence has been sold or lost to injury, and it showed last night when they went in four goals down at half-time.

This was fill-yer-boots time for Torres, who picked off Genk with two very nicely-taken finishes in the first half, the first time he has scored more than one goal in a game for Chelsea.

One miss aside he looked good but this was Genk. He would have got a tougher time from Anton Ferdinand at Queens Park Rangers on Sunday. It is a pity that having found his groove he will be suspended for the visit to Loftus Road.


Given the quality of the opposition, it was no surprise then that Villas-Boas was keen to play down Torres' contribution.

"Fernando played very well -- but we look at the collective performance. I'm pretty pleased with the way the team played," said Villas-Boas.

"The choice fell with Fernando today and he responded pretty well, as have all the strikers who have been used recently."

The young Portuguese boss did, however, stress that he never had any doubt that Torres would perform, despite his recent absence from first-team action -- he had not played for the Blues for three weeks due to a three-match suspension after being sent off against Swansea.

"It's important for players to feel confident, and he's feeling confident in his abilities," Villas-Boas said. "He was always on form."

In midfield, Spaniard Oriol Romeu was given his first start for Chelsea in the Champions League and looked impressive. Villas-Boas said later that the boy from Barcelona had been given the "best possible education" at his former club.

With Raul Meireles alongside him scoring his first goal for the club you could see again that a new order, if not quite a new team, is forming under Villas-Boas.

Last night's result leaves Chelsea in a strong position on top of Group E, with Bayer Leverkusen in second.

The game against the Germans on 23 November will probably prove decisive as to who wins the group, but before then Chelsea travel to Belgium to face Genk again.

Villas-Boas said: "This group could become very tight, depending on what happens in Leverkusen with Valencia. We just have to try and get three points in Genk.

"We want the best results possible to achieve qualification and go as far as we can in the competition.

"The most important months for us will be the last three of the season, when you finally collide or not with trophies."