Updates from Friday, Aug. 29
Chelsea announce Torres has been sent on loan to AC Milan:
Chelsea Football Club and AC Milan have agreed terms for the two-year loan deal of Fernando Torres to the Italian club.
The move is now subject to Fernando agreeing personal terms with AC Milan and passing a medical examination.
Jose Mourinho did not rule out the exit of Fernando Torres during Friday's pre-match press conference, amid strong rumours of a move to AC Milan.
Mourinho said of the Chelsea striker, per the Blues' official Twitter:
Football Italia's Staff continued:
Milan’s in-house television channel is claiming that Chelsea have given Fernando Torres permission to undergo a medical with the Rossoneri.
Earlier today respected Sky journalist Gianluca Di Marzio reported that the Premier League club had refused to pay the striker’s severance fee that would release him to join the San Siro outfit.
However, this afternoon Milan Channel have revealed that Jose Mourinho’s men have given the 30-year-old the all-clear to travel to Italy and visit the club’s medical specialists.
Fernando Torres' future away from Chelsea could be decided very soon, based on reports from Italy. The 30-year-old Spanish striker has reportedly agreed to a three-year switch to Serie A side AC Milan, per Corriere dello Sport (h/t 101 Great Goals):
According to the roaring headline, El Nino has agreed a three year deal with the Rossoneri.
Corriere Dello Sport credit AC Milan CEO Adriano Galliani for having brokered the Torres deal, although CdS do also recognise that there may be a twist in the tale.
With the Chelsea man having yet to officially put pen to paper on the Milan offer, Fernando Torres’ agent is also said to be speaking to AS Roma director Walter Sabatini about a possible move to the Stadio Olimpico.
The interest from Roma is intriguing. The capital city club's prized striker, Mattia Destro, is a prime target for Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho, according to Daily Mail writer Matt Barlow. Mourinho could step up his efforts to sign Destro if Torres moves to Italy, per Barlow.
Torres' move could be confirmed shortly. Milan have reportedly set a strict deadline on the deal, per GianlucaDiMarzio.com:
Saturday at midnight is the deadline That Has Milan set for Torres and Van Ginkel. The Rossoneri need to know the final answer by then, the issue with the Spanish striker is tied to the severance pay he wants from Chelsea.
Of course, the Rossoneri need a main striker after deciding to sell Mario Balotelli for a cut-down price. The maverick Italy international recently joined Liverpool, one of Torres' former clubs, for just £16 million.
Back in his Liverpool days, Torres was arguably the best centre-forward in the Premier League. He was quick, intelligent and deadly in front of goal.
However, his career has hit the skids ever since he sealed a £50 million move to Stamford Bridge in January 2011. Now the player looks as though only a move away from Mourinho's team will help revive his career.
That's a sentiment expressed by another former Chelsea striker and benchwarmer, Demba Ba, per Daily Mirror reporter John Cross:
I wish Fernando the best, I just wish he is going to find happiness. It will be hard (to find it at Chelsea). I don’t know where he will be happy but I just want him to have happiness because he is a nice guy.
It is difficult, because what I like to do is play football. It’s hard when you are always on the bench but you just have to keep your head up and work hard.
Ba's thought is certainly a credible one. The change in Torres has been alarming ever since he pulled on Chelsea blue.
Not only is a move away needed, but a total change of scenery is probably advisable. Moving away from the Premier League, where his reputation has disintegrated, makes sense.
In fact, a switch to Italy makes the most sense. One of Torres' main problems in recent seasons is the loss of his initial burst of acceleration.
That won't be such a factor in Serie A, where the pace of play is certainly not as high and fraught as it is in England. That should allow Torres to rely more on his natural craft and instincts to help rediscover his scoring touch.
Of course, this is all assuming he is even granted an exit from Stamford Bridge.
Mourinho only recently expressed his desire to keep Torres, per Sunday Mirror writer Sbu Mjikeliso. That desire could well have been strengthened by the recent hamstring injury sustained by new arrival Diego Costa, per Matt Law of The Telegraph.
That leaves the Blues relying on 36-year-old target man Didier Drogba. Mourinho may want a little extra cover alongside Chelsea's returning hero.
That would be very bad news for Torres. The player needs this move, probably more than Chelsea need to grant it.