Torres keen to work with Jose
Chelsea striker Fernando Torres is excited by the prospect of playing under Jose Mourinho. The outgoing Real Madrid boss is widely expected to take charge at Stamford Bridge for a second time after the Spanish season ends next weekend. Interim manager Rafael Benitez will now relinquish control following the end of the club's post-season tour of the United States. The club have not commented on reports a deal for Mourinho has already been struck but the flamboyant Portuguese does appear to be the only name seriously in the frame. Torres said: "We will see what happens. Everyone is expecting the new manager now and looking forward to next season. "I am sure it is going to be a great season. We are just waiting for the name of the new manager. "It looks like Jose is one of the managers who can come to Chelsea. Everyone is talking about that, we will see. "If he comes it will be great to have the chance to work for him and it will be a big challenge for everyone." With the new man arriving soon, Torres distanced himself from any suggestion he might be dependent on Benitez. Much of the 29-year-old's Chelsea career, since his £50million move from Liverpool in January 2011, has made for tortured viewing. But since Benitez, under whom the forward excelled at Anfield, took temporary charge at the club last November, Torres has looked less uncomfortable. He ended the campaign with a good return of 23 goals and he played his part as the Blues finished a difficult season well by winning the Europa League and qualifying for the Champions League. Torres said: "He helped the team, not me. "He came in in a difficult situation, personally, for him with the reaction of the fans and the team were not doing well at the time. "It takes a bit of time to do better but at the end of the season the team was much better than at the beginning. "He has helped the team, the team has been good. The players are better." Benitez has overcome huge fan hostility due to his past Liverpool association to deliver success for Chelsea. He is now being heavily linked with a quick return to management with Napoli. Torres said: "I think he came to do the job and he did. "He must be happy because he won a trophy with Chelsea. "We wish him all the best for the future. "I am sure he will be at a top club and we will play against him." Chelsea's mammoth season, which included the Club World Cup and extended runs in both domestic cups, ended with a second successive friendly loss to Manchester City in the USA. Last season's European champions, having lost 4-3 in St Louis on Thursday, went down 5-3 at Yankee Stadium in New York despite two goals from Ramires and a fine free-kick from Juan Mata. Chelsea will be back in the USA in pre-season to compete in the International Champions Cup, a tournament which will also involve a post-Mourinho Real Madrid. Everton, AC Milan, Inter Milan, Juventus, Valencia and Los Angeles Galaxy will also be involved. Torres hopes to carry momentum through to the start of the new season. He said: "Our expectations were high (last year) because we won the Champions League and we were fighting for many trophies at the beginning of the season. "Everything was difficult at Christmastime - we changed the manager and we lost the chance to win a couple of trophies. "It was not easy but the team showed character and the level we should have had for the season by winning the Europa League and finishing in the top three. "You cannot say it is a bad season. We have had a good season, won a European trophy and hopefully the new season can be better." Torres' own future has been the subject of speculation but he has no plans to leave the club. He said: "I signed a five-and-a-half year contract with Chelsea and I hope to stay at least five and a half years. "I don't know anything about this speculation."
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