Chelsea keep up their 100 percent record under Roberto Di Matteo with an assured performance against the Championship side as the Spaniard finally scores his much needed goal. The £50 million Spanish striker scuffed a shot into the net after 67 minutes and he struck again with a late header as Chelsea’s revival continued under caretaker manager Roberto Di Matteo. “I needed those goals, in the last month the team is much better than before,” man-of-the-match Torres told ESPN. “I have been playing well but not scoring goals. We are creating more chances than before and we are much better defensively.” Defender Gary Cahill headed Chelsea’s first goal before revealing a T-shirt with “Pray for Muamba” written on it, a reference to his former Bolton Wanderers team-mate Fabrice Muamba who collapsed during the FA Cup tie against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday and remains critically ill in hospital. Torres set up the second for Salomon Kalou to put Chelsea firmly in control and the Spaniard’s first goal in 25 matches effectively sent the London club into the last four before the match ended in a flurry of action. Leicester pulled one back through Jermaine Beckford, Torres neatly glanced in a corner, Ben Marshall’s superb 25-metre shot flew past Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech and Torres set up his side’s fifth for Raul Meireles in stoppage time.
“We’ve overcome every hurdle so far. I haven’t had time to enjoy it because the games are coming so fast.”
HD Match Highlights:
Torres managed just 4 goals this season under Villas-Boas, who lost his job two weeks ago yesterday. Under Di Matteo, Spaniard Torres has now scored two goals in four appearances. Chelsea went into this potentially awkward sixth-round tie on the back of three straight wins. The confidence is flowing through Di Matteo’s team and through Torres, who was unstoppable here. There have been games in which Torres, 28 tomorrow, has played quite well and not scored since his £50million move from Liverpool. But this time his body language radiated desire and determination, and the shoulders did not droop as the minutes ticked by. Afterwards, he could even afford a smile when ESPN hilariously bungled the man-of-the-match award, getting him to hand the champagne to Gary Cahill rather than the other way round before realising their error. Torres admitted: “I needed those goals. I’d been working so hard to get them, but in the last month the team has been playing much better. We are more committed. I was playing well, but I wasn’t scoring goals. We are making more chances now, and we are playing much better defensively.” Di Matteo said- “I wouldn’t want to take any credit. It is Fernando’s effort and work rate that has paid off for him. You get rewards when you work hard and he works hard.”
Torres – “I needed those goals. I’d been working so hard to get them, but in the last month the team has been playing much better. We are more committed. I was playing well, but I wasn’t scoring goals. We are making more chances now, and we are playing much better defensively.”
- Chelsea are keeping tabs on Havant &
Waterlooville striker Ollie Palmer, who has scored 14 goals since joining the club in September (Daily Mirror)
- The Blues do though face competition from AC Milan for the signature of Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Willian in the summer (Metro)
- Dutch defender Jeffrey Bruma is not keen on returning to his parent club Chelsea once his loan stint at Hamburg concludes at the end of the current season. The 20-year-old joined Hamburg on loan for the 2011/12 campaign and the deal struck with the Bundesliga outfit allows for that period to be extended for a further season. Handed the number 5 shirt and the chance to impress, Bruma is enjoying life at the Imtech Arena; he has clocked up 15 appearances in the German top flight so far, along with 90 minutes in the German Cup.
- Former Ajax, Bayern Munich and Barcelona manager Louis Van Gaal has emerged as the leading contender to take over as Chelsea manager. The Dutchman is understood to be ready for a return to management after a year-long time off. Van Gaal believes he can repeat his track record of success at one more top club and he finds the Chelsea job largely appealing.
- #Torres ends goalless streak as Chelsea advance (welcometothe716.com)
- Chelsea Caretaker Boss Robert Di Matteo On Fernando Torres – ‘He Has A Psychological Problem And Only Fernando Can Unlock It’ (theoriginalwinger.com)
- Di Matteo backs ‘valued’ Torres (skysports.com)
- Di Matteo: Restored Torres responded in fantastic style (independent.co.uk)