If you haven’t already, read Part 1 here: http://chelseafc360.com/2013/05/18/figuring-out-fernando-part-1/
Then came the legends of Zorres, the masked man who suddenly was scoring all sorts of goals and being a huge game changer as a sub and starter. Look at the change he made against Sunderland, opening up enough space to score the own goal equaliser. Or the FA cup semi-final, if Ba and Torres had only been allowed to play together just a bit earlier I find it hard to believe Torres wouldn’t have worked something. Not that he didn’t try with that clear penalty that wasn’t awarded (you don’t have to be so firm on your feet all the time Nando!). Being as superstitious as he is, no one expected Torres to take the mask off for fear it may bring about another drought. That’s why the absence of the mask against Tottenham was very surprising. And there was no change in his great attitude and movement. He even was able to squeeze in an assist for Ramires.
It’s prudent not just to look at the fact that league goals have been hard to come by this year for Torres (even though 20 goals in a season are impressive). Goals themselves are not always a fair assessment of a player’s contribution to the game. In his form, he unnerves defences and causes defenders to be eager to run to him and close him down the moment he touches a ball. While this is unfortunate for him, if he can pass the ball in time, miles of space is suddenly created allowing a teammate to score. And that, is the Torres effect of today.
Torres’ positioning on the field alone is testimony to the need to use two strikers. With Mourinho and a new centre forward coming in, by all accounts, there will be more freedom to do exactly this. Torres could play in the false 9 position or as a supporting striker. An analysis of Torres’ role was done of this by one of our writers which you can read here: http://chelseafc360.com/2013/02/15/fernando-torres-should-he-be-adapted-to-a-new-role/ . The Torres of late is seen more on the wings and going out wide to get crosses in rather than lurking in the box. That role is more suited for Demba Ba or Falcao if he were to sign for us. I personally think a great duo lies in El Tigre and El Niño. Falcao doesn’t run back and win balls or work on the wings, but give him a great ball and the score board changes before the ball hits the back of the net. Torres has developed into more than just a target man and he may be the key to Chelsea’s attack.
If we can exploit the False 9 position, we’re bound to be a huge contender for the title next season. We’re apparently looking at Lewandowski, Falcao and Schrulle as striking options. Falcao can’t be used in the False 9 position. He’s a target man, pass him the perfect ball and he’ll score. But he’s not one for assisting or tracking back – which was basically the Torres of Liverpool. Like Ba he’s one for lurking around the final defender, and running into the box to wait for the assist. Lewandowski and Schrulle are quite a bit like Torres. They can play both parts. Luckily, in Hazard we have someone else who can play False 9, yet another great option, as Moses or Oscar can replace him on midfield. If we get one or two of these forwards we’ll be set. Torres and Ba are a good combination. Not to mention Falcao and Torres. Lewandowski and Ba, Hazard and Schrulle, the options are endless. Plus, Lukaku and Lucas Piazon will only add greater depth once they come home. This system will end up being more beneficial to the squad than a lone striker, as our attacking group is more plentiful than our defensive midfield.
In my opinion, Chelsea should respect his wish to play out his contract. There’s been speculation that he might be sold, sent out on loan, or traded for Falcao back to Atletico Madrid. After his splurge of goals and confidence the Torres critics can surely appreciate his worth at Chelsea. If anyone can get Torres to improve even further and consistently score goals its Jose Mourinho. Falcao will be a flop if we continue wasting our resources with one striker. Falcao will be like Torres when he first arrived. He’s not much of a team player. And he’ll be waiting for a constant flow of balls which won’t be coming. We need Torres and we need two strikers. Here are two examples of a line ups:
False 9 Line up
Supporting Striker Line Up
Just to leave you with a quote from Branislav Ivanovic which I think perfectly sums up Torres:
‘Fernando is doing very well and always he is a team player. Even when he does not score we are not too disappointed because we know how hard he works every day, and I remember the game in Munich when he came on and changed things. I think Fernando is the guy for the big games.’
Fernando has been huge for us this season. He showed great work ethic and commitment to the club being our only striker until January, and leading the attack for every Europa League game.
Let me know what you think about Chelsea’s number 9 and his future at the club. Keep the Blue Flag Flying High!