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Chelsea the long term winners in an amazing transfer window

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Seeing that the dust has finally settled on what was a fascinating end to the 2011 January transfer window, it appears that Chelsea’s dealings have left them in the best shape on the pitch out of the big spenders, if not off it.

The facts behind the fascination show that the west London side spent around £70million on the last day of bartering, bringing in much-courted Benfica defender David Luiz and, of course, the wonderful talent that is Fernando Torres. Both are clever signings. Many, me included, simply gawp at the sheer size of the payouts that billionaire owner Roman Abramovich has bankrolled. In these modern times, however, it is the cold, hard cash that laughs the longest; all those connected with Chelsea will certainly have a broader smile on their face now that Torres and Luiz are ready to wear blue shirts come the weekend. Football holds a defining sense of irony, and this is brought into incredibly sharp focus when Liverpool visit Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Make no mistake; Liverpool have been significantly weakened by the transfer of their former number 9. It is true that Torres’ former club moved quickly to spend the money received from the transfer on two young strikers, Luis Suarez and Andy Carroll, who clearly have potential. The difference is that Torres, undeniably, has fulfilled his. Since 2007, Torres has scored the most goals in the Premier League bar no-one, despite hindering and well detailed injury niggles. He was the fastest Liverpool player to score 50 goals for the club, by a long way.

His class hasn’t been rewarded by his club. Being part of a Liverpool side that have generally underperformed under the guise of Rafa Benitez and Roy Hodgson has stalled his quest for glory; internationally he is almost untouchable with Spain, but in domestic football the only trophy he has ever won came ten years ago when Atletico Madrid won the Spanish second division. Swapping Liverpool, battling for Europa League qualification, for Chelsea, battling for the Premiership, F.A Cup and the Champions League, is a no-brainer when put in such simple terms.

Chelsea are lucky to be in a position where they have the financial muscle to shell out for a proven Premiership striker who should, theoretically, be hungry to succeed, wanting to win trophies and, most importantly, be coming to the peak of his career. Questions arise as to where the Spaniard will fit into Chelsea’s formation; put simply, Torres, Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka are good enough to play together. This may be the case for a season or two before Drogba and Anelka, both past 30, start to fade away from the Premiership spotlight. Fernando Torres is an excellent acquisition that can both compliment, and replace.

Furthermore, Brazilian Luiz adds strength in depth to an already well-oiled defence that maintains the second best defensive record in the league this season despite their recent well documented loss of form. The defence now has 2 experienced, international players in every slot of the back four, with players like Paolo Ferreira, Branislav Ivanovic and Luiz being able to play in more than one position. Petr Cech completes a rearguard that is extremely difficult to break down.

The signings of Torres and Luiz will not guarantee immediate domestic success. There is a vast 10 point margin between the 4th placed Blues and leaders Manchester United, and only 14 games of the season remain. That said, it is not insurmountable. Chelsea are still to play United twice, and will be confident of two wins to match last season’s results. United’s Nemanja Vidic may still have nightmares about Torres after he was well beaten when Liverpool famously left Old Trafford 4-1 victors a couple of seasons ago. Now he is in a Chelsea shirt with Drogba as a bustling sidekick. If Chelsea do win both games then the gap will be down to 4 points. Game on. Similarly, international pedigree can do no harm to a club who strive to win the Champions League. Even the mighty Barcelona and Real Madrid will have to sit up and take notice of Chelsea now Torres, arguably the world’s best striker, has joined their ranks. F.C Copenhagen, with all due respect, should be disposed of, leaving the Blues lurking menacingly in the quarter final draw.

The world of football is looking forward to Luiz’s and especially Torres’ debut come Sunday against Liverpool. If the striker can hit the ground running, maybe even score against his former teammates, then he will quickly secure his place in Chelsea folklore. His impetus, and the confidence he will undoubtedly give his colleagues, may also enhance Chelsea’s European stock to levels previously unseen.

Are Chelsea now better equipped to win the Premiership and Champions League with their new signings? Please leave your comments below.



  1. donkee

    February 3, 2011 at 9:20 am

    Rubbish article,Torres hasnt played well for 2 seasons and has lost his speed where LFC have bought in 2 young players who will add more then Torres has done for that plastic club chelski.

  2. torres who

    February 3, 2011 at 9:45 am

    i agree that is rubbish torres has not played well for 2 season we now have a strike force that will be more feared than when torres was at liverpool ,torres is never happy and if you dont when the prem which i dont think you will he have handed in a transfer request and will want to move to barcelona
    watch out liverpool are coming back
    saurez to score on sunday

  3. Solodee

    February 3, 2011 at 9:59 am

    Funny article. Torres has been subpar for two seasons. He also has a hamstring injury waiting to happen. Don’t give up on Drogba being your main striker just yet.

  4. Antix

    February 3, 2011 at 10:19 am

    Fernando who??? Did he play for liverpool? Really? when..
    I do remember a sulky little spaniard who couldnt score in a brothel, oh and he had an amazing world cup..cough. Good luck with him…

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  7. tom

    February 3, 2011 at 10:54 am

    good article{lol} are you for real,or are you trying to convince yourself that chelsea got a good deal. torres has been rubbish, his pro stats are a joke. maybe he’ll do better for chelsea who knows. but you cant honestly believe that liverpool are a weaker side now with suarez and carrol. some people say torres has been poor for liverpool cause he didnt want to be there,so what about the world cup? i think we done you for 50mil but only time will tell. cant wait till sunday……..

  8. dionysus

    February 3, 2011 at 11:11 am

    then he will quickly secure his place in Chelsea folklore…do Chelsea have “folklore”? Really a club without any history of winning major trophies?

    Paul Konchesky went to a club with a proud history, he could write his name into their folklore, Nottingham Forest have won two European Cups.

  9. Sm0k3rZ

    February 3, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    wow all the liverpoo supporters trying to make themselves feel better by chatting crap…all of the sudden torres is nothing just cuz he left a club which lives off its former glory and are rubbish at the moment. Sunday will show which strike force is more menacing.

  10. Simon Amstell

    February 3, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    A week ago these people would have been saying Torres was the best striker in the world. Now he plays in blue, for a better team and all of a sudden he is over the hill? Think about it you lot are only fooling yourselves.

  11. Richie

    February 3, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    Liverpool fans! ah haha….idiots…you were wanking torres off two weeks ago, now he is shit….as the article mentions…best scoring record bar none..wanted a move to a bigger club. got it. watch him piss all over you Sunday and eat you words.

  12. Tony Appleton

    February 3, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    Appreciate all the responses.

    Liking the mention about Konchesky dionysus. I’m actually a Forest fan, not Chelsea, and with that in mind I am hardly trying to convice myself that Chelsea have got themselves a deal, it is just something I believe.

    I completely accept the point about him being subpar recently. You have to ask why that is. Since finishing 2nd a few years back the club has gone backwards through reasons which are multiple. Maybe he did lose interest at Liverpool, but that doesn’t mean he’s lost quality. The facts of the few seasons before, most notably his goals to games ratio, highlight that he is just awesome. Now he has joined a club which is challenging on 3 fronts, and will continue to challenge at the top level for many years to come, I do think he will return to something like his best.

    Liverpool are weaker because of this transfer. Suarez did look decent last night (I only have Match of the Day’s highlights to base this on) but let’s remember the transfer was basically agreed BEFORE Torres even wanted to leave. Suarez was seen as perfect foil for Torres, not a replacement. The man who I think has been signed as a replacement is grossly, grossly overvalued at £35mil. He’s currently injured. He’s a very good player, don’t get me wrong, in fact Carroll is possibly the best aerial threat in the Premiership…but where’s his service going to come from? Liverpool, Gerrard and possibly Aurelio (and he can’t get in the team!) apart, have no crossers of the ball.

    Conclusion: Torres and Suarez would have made Liverpool a big threat for the rest of the season. Suarez and Carroll equal two players with potential; one of which is injured for an indefinite period of time. Liverpool have sold the best striker in the Premiership to a title chasing side, and are the best part of £10million down because of it. They are weaker.

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