Champions League - Villas-Boas: Torres issue is over
Wed, 14 Sep 08:10:00 2011
Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas maintained there was no longer an issue with critical comments from striker Fernando Torres after the Spaniard helped his side record a 2-0 Champions League win over Bayer Leverkusen at Stamford Bridge.
Torres spoke to the official website of Spain's Primera Liga last week, with an English translation later appearing on the striker's personal website, where he was quoted as branding Chelsea's "older" players as "very slow", and hailing new team-mate Juan Mata - whom he set-up for Chelsea's second goal in stoppage time - as a necessary signing.
"We had a chat and the situation is solved. The investigation is over," Villas-Boas said. "You saw the player involved and he put in a good collective performance, like the team did. Hopefully these things won't arise in the group again. If they do, it will be the manager who has to resolve it."
Villa-Boas refused to confirmed whether the misfiring Spain striker had done enough to play his way into the starting XI for Sunday's Barclays Premier League showdown at Manchester United.
"I have to make a decision. We have another couple of days to train, and he will compete with the other four for that position. We have to take the best decision possible," the Chelsea boss said.
With one eye on Sunday's trip to Old Trafford, Villas-Boas rested Chelsea captain John Terry completely and left Frank Lampard on the bench. Chelsea laboured through much of the match, with England under-21 forward Daniel Sturridge the main livewire before Luiz tucked home what looked set to be the winner in the 67th minute.
"We have to be fair that Leverkusen went one on one with our goalkeeper before we scored, but we had numerous chances throughout the game. We deserved to win this game," he said.
"An international week has gone by, then we had Sunderland after two days and then, after another two days, a Champions League win against a very tough team. But I'm pleased, particularly with good passing and fluency in the game."
Villas-Boas felt there should be no issue with his team selection.
"It's just fairness compared to the amount of talent that we have at our disposal," he said. "It would be a mistake for me not to try and keep everybody motivated. That's the task of any manager. I don't see any braveness in it. I'm sure the players have not suffered from it as a result in the past."
Chelsea boss happy with win