Torres keen to hold Mourinho talks
Fernando Torres says he is not worried by rumours about a summer move to Barcelona, and is looking forward to hearing how he fits into new Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho’s plans for next season.
With Chelsea set to sign Andre Schurrle from Bayer Leverkusen, and Mourinho talking positively about returning Belgian youngster Romelu Lukaku, it remains to be seen how Torres might fit in up front at Stamford Bridge next term, while the player himself said last week he was flattered by rumours of a £17 million Barca bid.
Speaking from the Spain camp at the Confederations Cup, the Madrid-native told Onda Cero radio show Al Primer Toque that he did not know if Barca's interest was real, but suggested his primary objective now was to talk with Mourinho about his Chelsea future.
“This is all normal, every summer is the time for rumours, new coaches and players,” Torres said. “Until the Confederations Cup is over the squads will not be closed, but my head is here with the national team.
"Barcelona remain one of the best teams in the world, but sincerely, I do not know if there is real interest or not. I am just thinking about the Confederations Cup, immediately after that about Chelsea. I want to speak with Mourinho and then get ready for next season. I am looking forward to that conversation, to know what plans he has for me and to tell him my point of view.”
The former Liverpool striker said he was aiming to add the Premier League winners' medal that his current impressive collection still lacks.
“Chelsea is the club where I am and where I want to be, I want to keep winning big trophies here,” Torres said. “Mourinho is a very demanding coach, but who has always guaranteed success. I am confident that he will have something prepared for me. I have three more years on my contract, I expect and want to fulfil those. I want to win the Premier League, which is the only trophy I am missing.”
The future of Torres’ club and international colleague Juan Mata also remains a subject of speculation, with Mundo Deportivo claiming Barcelona are ready to take advantage of reports in the UK that “although it seems unbelievable” Mourinho wants to move on the club’s current player of the year.
The Catalan paper repeats claims made on Spanish radio station Cadena SER that Mata’s father - who is also his agent - is unhappy that Chelsea are stalling on a bonus due for his son’s 19 goals and 35 assists during the 2012-13 club season. Should Barca sell Thiago Alcantara or Cristian Tello this summer, then an ideal spot for Mata would open up at the Camp Nou, the story suggests.
Mundo Deportivo also reported on Tuesday morning that Barcelona sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta had threatened to resign recently in a disagreement over the future of backroom and youth coaches at the club.
The paper’s ‘top secret’ feature claimed that senior Barca figures had wanted to replace scouting department coordinator Albert Valentin, but Zubi disagreed and informed blaugrana sporting vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu that “if he goes I go”, leading to Valentin being offered another year’s contract.
The alleged disagreement highlights ongoing internal fissures at the Camp Nou, linked to the long simmering feud between current president Sandro Rosell and his predecessor Joan Laporta.