Dan Brett: Torres has chance for redemption against United

12 April 2011 01:19
There have been many stories, comments and jokes made about Chelsea's £50million man, but Fernando Torres has the opportunity to down all of his critics tonight as his side travel to Old Trafford for the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final.

The Spanish striker joined the London side in the January transfer window from Liverpool, in a move that had all the promise of reigniting the forward's poor run of form. Liverpool fans were not too sad to be seeing the back of Torres, after news broke of a move for Newcastle and England startlet Andy Carroll joining up at Anfield.

Chelsea fans were rubbing their hands together at the prospect of Fernando Torres pulling on the blue shirt and stepping out at Stamford Bridge, however he has yet to score in any of his seven appearances, leaving him below Didier Drogba, Nicolas Anelka and Florent Malouda in the pecking order to start the match.

Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti faces a tough decision in picking his side for this match, with owner Roman Abramovic previously spotted at matches looking disgruntled at Torres' performances since joining the club. It's thought that the pressure's on Ancelotti to get the striker scoring, though, with the hefty price tag paid to Liverpool for his services.

Torres' last goal came on New Years Day when he scored the equaliser against Bolton Wanderers in a 2-1 win, but since then has looked all but a shadow of the player that was loved by thousands of Liverpool fans' soon after joining from Atletico Madrid in 2007.

The match also sees another game for England manager Fabio Capello to be keen on, as the captaincy saga rolls on. John Terry and Rio Ferdinand are set to start the match, giving the Italian chance to run the rule over his decision to re-instate Terry as captain of the national side.

Many, including Ferdinand and former-England international Gary Neville, still feel aggrieved by Capello's handling of the affair, throwing into doubt Ferdinand's potential to ever captain England again while the current regime stay in management.

The winner of the tie will likely play German side Schalke in the semi-final, potentially giving United opportunity to challenge for a place in their third Champions League final in four years. The Red Devils beat Chelsea in 2008 and finished second-best to Barcelona in 2009.

Dan Brett

Source: DSG