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The Final Word On Torres: All Hail The New Berbatov!

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Since his record-breaking transfer to Chelsea, Fernando Torres has been compared to many former big-money strikers – from Shevchenko (by one of Soccerlens’ own) to Chris Sutton.

And after a low-key debut against Liverpool where the tactics of both sides were analysed to death (although few remembered that Steve Clarke, the former Chelsea assistant coach, now works with Dalglish), it’s worth remembering another record signing who took more than just a few games (almost two seasons to be exact) to find his feet at his new ‘big’ club – Dimitar Berbatov (who is, according to the latest sports betting from BetUS, odds-on favourite to finish top goalscorer in the Premier League this season – what a turnaround from the last two seasons!).

Like Torres, Berbatov angled for a move away from Tottenham when he realised that a) Tottenham weren’t good enough at the time to challenge for the league title and b) there was a bigger club waiting to sign him. Although Berbatov didn’t suffer from as poor a run in form before his move as Torres, he took his bloody time at making a transition from being the most important player for his club to being one of three-four strikers the manager could call upon.

The similarities with Berbatov are there in age too – Berbatov was 27 when he moved to United, and called it his final move in his career (or his final ‘big’ move, in any case). Torres will turn 27 in March, and with his contract he’s unlikely to be pitching up tent anywhere else for the next 3-4 years.

Torres, like Berbatov before his move to Manchester United, was always given the main striking duties for his club. His role at Chelsea is different, and he’ll take time to adapt. For the sake of Chelsea fans, hopefully it will be this season or at worst, start of next season. He’s already proving to be a valuable commercial asset selling plenty of shirts, but for a player who aspires to challenge for titles, he’ll need to start scoring goals soon.

With other quality strikers alongside him he may not reach the same prolific heights as he did for that season with Liverpool, but terrorise Vidic again and score 20 goals every season and you’ve more or less paid back your transfer fee…in about 5 years. Unless he helps them win the league title or the Big Cup, although looking at Chelsea’s squad they’ll need to improve performances or strengthen again if they are to mount a convincing challenge for either title.

Comments (3)

  1. It seems everyone was expecting Torres to come out and pump in 2, 3 goals on his debut! C’mon, what happened to a little realism? No matter the hype, it was the bloke’s first game with new team-mates for goodness sake! Not to mention he was playing against his immediately prior club, the pyschological aspect of it alone must have been pretty daunting. It might take a little time for him to find his feet and rhythm in this new team but rest assured, he’ll be just fine at Chelsea.

  2. Final word?? We can only hope so. Fernando Torres is a great striker when he’s happy and not on the injury list … he IS NOT the second coming. He adjusted quickly, and apparently easily, to the English Game when he arrived from Spain and there’s no reason to assume he would suddenly loose his abilities – unless he finds himself unhappy with Chelsea. I’m looking forward to the day that we can look at football news and “interest” articles about footballers without seeing the name Fernando Torres!!! ENOUGH!!!!!!

  3. Berbatov’s debut season was respectable and he scored more League goals than Carlos Tevez despite making less appearances and having to work in a new team framework

    In Berbatov’s second season he didn’t do much of the scoring (he didn’t have to, Rooney scored 30+). But he still managed to finish second in the Premier League in assists (A stat that no one ever mentions, and even more impressive seeing as how he was never picked for big games)

    This season (his 3rd) he is leading the PL in goals as Rooney is going through a crisis and the team needed him to step up again.

    He took some time to settle but you are making it seem like he was awful for his first 2 years, and he wasn’t.