Saturday 20 January 2018

Torres drought

Fernando Torres tonight seeks to end a 12-match scoring drought dating back to January 22.

Here we look at the Spaniard's barren run.

For Liverpool

January 26, Liverpool 1 Fulham 0 (Barclays Premier League)

With speculation over his future mounting, Torres plays his last 90 minutes for Liverpool. Hits the post in the build-up to the winning goal, causing John Pantsil to slice into his own net.

For Chelsea

February 6, Chelsea 0 Liverpool 1 (Premier League)

The fates bring Liverpool to Stamford Bridge for Torres' debut following his £50million switch. Torres is taunted by the away supporters throughout and lasts only 66 minutes as his former employers have the last laugh through a goal from Raul Meireles.

February 14, Fulham 0 Chelsea 0 (Premier League)

Starts in place of Didier Drogba wastes every opportunity to come his way. The Spaniard cannot control a ball from David Luiz when clean through and heads over a cross from Ramires when well positioned. Drogba replaces him with 19 minutes left.

February 22, FC Copenhagen 0 Chelsea 2 (Champions League second round, first leg)

Drogba is again the victim as Torres is paired with Nicholas Anelka in Denmark. The Frenchman overshadows him, scoring twice, but Torres shows some promise by working shooting opportunities, only for his finish to let him down.

March 1, Chelsea 2 Manchester United 1 (Premier League)

Carlo Ancelotti perseveres with Torres for the biggest league match of the season to date, but the striker is again eclipsed by others as Chelsea come from behind. Shows some early promise but is mostly shackled by Nemanja Vidic and Chris Smalling.

March 7, Blackpool 1 Chelsea 3 (Premier League)

Plays 90 minutes but the headlines belong to the old guard of John Terry and Frank Lampard. Partnered with Drogba, but the two fail to combine effectively. Drogba replaced by Kalou on 55 minutes, much to his displeasure.

March 16, Chelsea 0 FC Copenhagen 0 (Champions League second round, second leg)

With the tie all but won, Ancelotti goes with Drogba and Anelka, with Torres on the bench. Receives some vindication as the pair fail to score but offers little encouragement when introduced for the Frenchman on 68 minutes.

March 20, Chelsea 2 Manchester City 0 (Premier League; Stamford Bridge)

One of Chelsea's best performances of the season, but Torres is again subdued partnering Kalou up top. Nigel de Jong produces a perfectly-timed tackle to stop him running through but there's little joy otherwise. Replaced by Drogba on 70 minutes.

March 25, Spain 2 Czech Republic 1 (European Championship qualifier)

Replaces Jesus Navas for the second half in Granada but the plaudits belong to David Villa, who scores twice to eclipse Raul's international scoring record.

April 2, Stoke 1 Chelsea 1 (Premier League)

Starts on the bench at the Britannia Stadium, with Drogba scoring Chelsea's goal. Comes on for Anelka with half an hour left but contributes little apart from a deflected effort as Chelsea drop vital points.

April 6, Chelsea 0 Manchester United 1 (Champions League quarter-final, first leg)

Ancelotti again demonstrates his faith in Torres, but the night belongs to a frontman wearing red as Wayne Rooney sets United on course for the semis. The Spaniard cannot direct his shot when given a clear sight of goal late in the first half and is denied by Edwin Van Der Sar in the second.

April 9, Chelsea 1 Wigan 0 (Premier League)

Comes on to a standing ovation after an hour. Elbows Ali Al Habsi in the face in the build-up to Florent Malouda's winner, only for the Wigan goalkeeper to gain his revenge by saving his shot in the dying moments.

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