Chelsea Transfer News: Fernando Torres' Fealty Shouldn't Stop Pursuit of Hulk
It didn't take Fernando Torres long to reverse course on his supposed desire to ditch Chelsea, though that shouldn't hinder the club's chase of another high-priced goal scorer, be it Eden Hazard or, say, Hulk.
El Niño has since clarified (if not recanted) statements of disappointment and destitution that he made during an interview with Spanish journalist Guillem Balague shortly after the Blues captured the UEFA Champions League title against Bayern Munich last Saturday. Said Torres in an interview on his official website:
"At Chelsea I am very happy and I never said the opposite. I still have a lot to do in this club, meet personal goals, confidence to return and love to thank. It has been a difficult year...But I have never surrendered and I never will..."Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
"My goal was to talk to [the owners] at the end of the season, I needed to know what plans they had for me. We've talked and now I have no doubt what they expect of Fernando Torres. I just want to start already next season."
That's all well and good, what with Didier Drogba expected to depart for China, Salomon Kalou out of contract and Daniel Sturridge and Romelu Lukaku still in need of seasoning at striker, the latter much more so than the former.
But, if anything, Torres' renewed commitment only adds a sense of urgency to Chelsea's pursuit of another finisher on the transfer market. According to ESPN Soccernet, Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay has expressed faith in Fernando's ability to return to the form that made him the most expensive transfer acquisition in the history of English football in January of 2011, but is not necessarily content to settle for having just one reliable goal scorer:
"We may have two big-name centre-forwards scoring 25-30 goals for us next season and maybe then we will improve on our sixth position in the league."
That could mean Eden Hazard, for whose services Chelsea remains one of three finalists in the English Premier League.
However, should Hazard opt to sign with Manchester City or Manchester United, the Blues would be wise to talk to Porto about Hulk. ESPN Soccernet reports that the bulky Brazilian is interested in a move to Stamford Bridge. Said his agent, Teodoro Fonseca:
"We are open to talks with Chelsea at any time, any place."
"There is interest, but at the moment there is still nothing concrete. He likes the English Premier League a lot and Chelsea are a good club for Hulk."
A positive sign, to say the least, though his £80 million release clause figures to deter just about every club, including one whose ownership has pockets as deep as Chelsea's.
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Still, as proud as the Blues should be of their unlikely Champions League-FA Cup double, there's still much work to be done and much improvement to be made in West London.
Roman Abramovich wasn't likely at all pleased by Chelsea's sixth-place finish in the Premiership, and with the Mancunian powers set to reload, should be compelled to spend even more to not only keep his club relevant, but also help it gain a stronger foothold among the upper echelon at home and abroad.
A bounce-back season by Fernando Torres would keep the Blues on the straight and narrow. A high-priced addition—be it Hazard, Hulk or someone else—would propel them down the path further and faster than ever.
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