LONDON – Spain striker Fernando Torres is certain he can fill Didier Drogba’s shoes for Chelsea following the Ivory Coast international’s transfer to Shanghai Shenhua.
Drogba joined the Chinese club last month after plundering 157 goals in eight years at Stamford Bridge, including a late equaliser and the winning penalty in a shootout against Bayern Munich in the Champions League final on May 19.
Torres, who has had his share of ups and downs since leaving Liverpool for a British record fee of 50 million pounds ($78.57 million) in Jan. 2011, said he was looking forward to taking on the pressure of leading the line for the European champions.
“I like the responsibility and it’s a thing I’ve been doing all my life,” the 28-year-old told the club’s website (http://www.chelseafc.com) on Saturday.
“Didier did everything for this club, scoring the winning goal in the Champions League was an inspiration for us,” added Torres, who was on target in Spain’s 4-0 victory over Italy in the final of Euro 2012 at the start of this month.
“Our relationship was great and I was talking to him when he decided to leave. He wished me all the best and hopefully one day, Chelsea fans will remember me as they are going to remember him.”
Chelsea play their first game of the Premier League season at Wigan Athletic on Aug. 19. – Reuters