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Aug 26, 2012

Fernando Torres praises Eden Hazard

Chelsea striker Fernando Torres says it is a privilege to play on the same team as the likes of new Stamford Bridge favorite Eden Hazard.

Both Torres and Hazard had outstanding games in the 2-0 win over Newcastle on Saturday.

The 28-year-old Torres won the Blues a penalty that was converted by Hazard, who then teed up the Spaniard for the second goal with a clever back-heel.

Torres has struggled for goals since his 50 million pound ($79 million) move from Liverpool to Stamford Bridge, but a change in mentality, plus the additions made over the summer, means he is now in a better position to find the back of the net on a more regular basis.

"We have showed to everyone how strong we are when we have to defend like we did last season but we have another way to play as well -- I think it is important a big team to have different kinds of ways to play," Torres told ChelseaTV. "We are enjoying ourselves, I think we are having a really good start to the season and everyone can see from the stands we are enjoying it and I think the fans are enjoying it too.

"We are playing really good football for the moment so lets keep building on it."

Chelsea lifted the FA Cup and Champions League last season under Roberto Di Matteo playing with a somewhat defensive setup but with Hazard, Marko Marin, Oscar and Victor Moses all being added to the squad, a more attacking philosophy has now been adopted and Torres is pleased to be a part of it.

"A player like (Hazard) can make a difference," he said. "It is a privilege for a striker to have a player like him or Eden or Juan (Mata), Oscar or (Frank Lampard) behind you.

"I think we are having the ball more than usual and that is important. We are not as worried as last season about defending because we have the ball for most of the time. "It is difficult to start wining games when you change your style but we are doing it and we must be proud of that."

Torres was obviously happy to score but believes the victory, which saw Chelsea return to the top of the Barclays Premier League with three successive wins, is more important.

"Two nil at the end is the main thing. You helped the team by scoring and winning the penalty for Eden and that is good," he added. "Always the striker has to score and I have said many times it was one of the things I wanted to improve and I have done so far this season."

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew praised both Torres and Hazard following the match but put his side's slow start to the game down to the fact it had played only 48 hours earlier in a Europa League qualifier.

The Magpies drew 1-1 with Greek side Atromitos on Thursday night and, despite making nine changes to his starting XI for the Chelsea fixture, Pardew feels it took its toll.

"I think today it was a little bit unfair to us that we couldn't get the game on the Sunday," he said. "It would have been nice to have had that extra day's rest. It would have made a difference -- we know from our own stats and information we take that a professional player cannot play at the same level in two games in two days, he can't. I don't care who you are it makes it difficult."

The former West Ham manager also reckons it is unlikely there will be any more transfer activity before the close of the window but also refused to rule out a return to the northeast for Liverpool striker Andy Carroll.

New Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers said earlier in the week that Newcastle's loan move for Carroll earlier in the month was a 'liberty' but Pardew remains interested in the England striker, even if the deal is out of his hands.

"That is above me that deal, it is a financial deal that will be done at board level if Liverpool agree," he said. "If I was saying on a playing level would I like him in the squad, of course I would. He would add a nice dimension to us."

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