Fernando Torres has said he felt he could wait no longer for Liverpool to reclaim their place as potential title challengers, and that he has joined Chelsea to win trophies.
Torres, signed for a British record £50 million last Monday, was presented to the media at Chelsea’s training ground in Cobham ahead of his debut for his new club against Liverpool on Sunday.
“Things had changed a lot in the last year,” Torres said of his time at Liverpool. “I think they have great ambition and they are doing the right things to get back but it will take time. I didn’t have that time.”
In 2007, Torres joined a Liverpool side that had finished as runners-up in the Champions League the previous season, and although they challenged for the Premier League in 2008-09, the striker ended his Liverpool career without any silverware.
Having won Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup with his country, a lack of success at club level is something Torres is keen to address at Chelsea.
“The Champions League is the main thing,” he said. “I know the ambition this club has about winning the Champions League, and it is the same ambition that I have. I think the ambition of this team is to keep winning trophies every year, so I have the same motivation. Talking about that, we are all thinking the same thing.”
Torres admitted he had decided “ten-12 days before the transfer window closed” that he wanted to leave Anfield in order to join Chelsea, and made his position very clear to the club. The striker saw an official transfer requested rejected by Liverpool just days before his move was sanctioned.
“As soon as I knew that Liverpool and Chelsea were talking about that, I told them that the decision was made,” Torres said. “I was the first one to go to the manager and tell them.”
But the manner of his departure has angered some Liverpool fans, who are likely to make vent their feelings at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.
“I only have good things to say about Liverpool people,” said Torres. “They made me feel really good there for three-and-a-half fantastic seasons.
“I understand they will be angry and will not understand my decision. Maybe in a few days or weeks I will explain all the reasons.
“When I was an Atletico Madrid fan growing up, I couldn’t understand it when a big player left.
“I’m not asking them to understand me but I’m sure over time they will see what I did there.
“Football is like this. From one day to the other, people can love you or hate you.”
Torres’ commitment to the cause at Liverpool had been criticised this season but he said: “I never lost my ambition.
“Too many people are talking about that – that’s just opinions. I was playing out of form for a month.”