Benitez claims his Chelsea revolution is working now Torres is back in the goals

By Ben Rumsby, Press Association


Rafael Benitez has claimed Fernando Torres's long-awaited return to form is proof that his Chelsea revolution is working.

Almost two years since Torres' record-breaking move from Liverpool and he is finally starting to score the number of goals to justify his £50million price tag.

Six in five games is by far the most sustained run of the 28-year-old's Stamford Bridge career and it has co-incided almost exactly with his reunion with former Anfield boss Benitez.

Back in business: Fernando Torres has been in the goals since Rafa Benitez came in

Back in business: Fernando Torres has been in the goals since Rafa Benitez came in

Chelsea's interim manager immediately identified that Torres had lost some of the physical conditioning that had made him one of the most feared forwards in the world, as well as an obvious lack of confidence from failing to find the back of the net.

'Two or three things that we are doing for some players are really good," Benitez said, claiming the sharpness in the majority of his players was now 'much better'.


'Fernando is one of the examples.'

He added: 'He's scoring goals and the team is winning and playing well, so he's really happy, not just because he's scoring goals but also because the team's doing well.'

Despite the clear impact Benitez has made on Torres, he played down the extent of his own influence on his fellow Spaniard.

'I think that the team has an influence on him because the team is doing well, so the team is playing better, creating more chances,' he said.

'So Fernando is taking more chances.'

Getting better: Chelsea's manager Rafa Benitez applauds supporters after beating Leeds

Getting better: Chelsea's manager Rafa Benitez applauds supporters after beating Leeds

Benitez refused to speculate on exactly how much his training methods had improved Torres and others during his month in charge ahead of tomorrow's Barclays Premier League clash with Aston Villa.

'You can more or less think but imagine I will say to you that they are 90 per cent [fit] and we lose on Sunday, you will say, 'What is going on?"' he said.

'[What] if I say 20 per cent and we beat Aston Villa 5-0?

'Football is so special that you cannot guarantee 70, 50 or 60.

'What I can say is we have time to bring players in the team and then change players, so we can manage the tiredness a little bit better.'

Indeed, Benitez has rotated his squad far more than predecessor Roberto Di Matteo and he revealed fatigue had been a real concern in the wake of Chelsea's gruelling Club World Cup trip to Japan.

Back where it all began: Cech is looking forward to going back to play Sparta Prague

Back where it all began: Cech is looking forward to going back to play Sparta Prague

So much so in fact that it threatened to derail Benitez's plans for Wednesday's Capital One Cup quarter-final win at Leeds.

'Some players, they were quite tired,' he said.

'The day before, we were training and I was talking with the fitness coach.

'We had three or four that could be a problem.

'We decided to change some players but I didn't want to change too many.'

With no end in sight to their punishing fixture schedule, tiredness is likely to become more of a problem as the season progresses.

That makes reinforcing what is an alarmingly thin squad imperative during the January transfer window.

Reports today suggest Benitez faces a battle to convince Chelsea's board to spend big rather than recalling some of the youngsters the club currently has out on loan.

Inaction is simply not an option, with Daniel Sturridge said to be on the brink of being sold, Oriol Romeu out for the season and John Obi Mikel and Victor Moses set to be missing for up to a month on African Nations Cup duty.

Chelsea's failure to reach the Champions League knockout stage has also left them with two extra potential fixtures in the shape of a Europa League last-32 clash with Sparta Prague.

One player not complaining about a trip to the Czech Republic was goalkeeper Petr Cech, who will return to the club where he made his name.

'It is fantastic for me to be able, after 12 years, to finally play a Czech team in a European competition,' Cech told Chelsea TV.

'Although the ideal scenario was to play them in the Champions League, this is one of the positives from not being able to play in the Champions League now.

'We will try to win the Europa League now and it is great for me to have this experience of going home and playing for Chelsea in Czech Republic.'



The comments below have not been moderated.

Benitez talks a good game lets see what he is made of over the holiday period and where we are at the end of it. Whatever happens please santa bring us a new striker even if it is Lukaku back from WBA anything is better than the Spanish Waiters Son...................................

Click to rate     Rating   5

the fat rafa is gobbing off again,just a win against villa would be my cry, the m/u fans on this thread, could nt agee more about c/sea missing a consistent scoring striker etc etc..falcao will cover this in january..

Click to rate     Rating   5

common "chelsea supporters" just stop annoying El Nino , he's gettin back to his old form as i can see , maybe benitez could be the key for chelsea 2 play good football i mean in a more direct form wich benefits hotshot Torres. BTW the Manchester clubs aren't that WOW ! CHELSEA ALL THE WAY !

Click to rate     Rating   7

Out out Lady Torres! enough is enough, can wait to see Falcao coming to bench Torres for EVER!

Click to rate     Rating   4

Benitez is a monumental Clown, Torres hasn't turned the corner he is still dire, I have not seen anything from this guy recently to convince me otherwise, I cannot wait for him to leave Chelsea...

Click to rate     Rating   14

no thanks

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Stevie, Manchester, Who rattled your cage, skip rat!

Click to rate     Rating   9

Torres' 15 goals - 2 against Leeds in the Mickey Mouse cup, 2 against Nordsjaelland, 1 against City in the Charity Shield, 1 in a 4-1 home win against Norwich, the 5th in a 6-0 win against Wolverahampton, 1 against Reading, 1 against Newcastle, 2 against Sunderland. The only genuinely good teams he has scored against in meaningful games are Arsenal, Shakhtar, and (debateably) Monterrey. Van Persie, meanwhie, has already scored crucial goals against the big teams such as Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester City, and of course his hat-trick against Southampton, the match winner against West Ham, and crucial goals against Braga, Cluj, Reading, and Fulham. Bit of a woeful comparison when you actually look at the evidence rather than spouting mindless stats

Click to rate     Rating   21

What planet is this bloke on?

Click to rate     Rating   2

team is winning ????hahahahahahaha .

Click to rate     Rating   18

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