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Feb 5, 2011

Torres: I never loved Liverpool

Fernando Torres has played down the emotional aspect of his Chelsea debut against Liverpool by claiming the only club he truly loves is Atletico Madrid.

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Torres has promised not to celebrate if he scores against former club Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on Sunday out of respect for their fans, but he also removed himself from his status as Anfield hero by claiming he "never kissed the badge" while at the Reds.

While many Liverpool fans are unhappy with their former idol's £50million move away from Anfield, Torres bluntly stated he was simply a professional footballer with his own ambitions and that the only club in his heart is Atletico, who he left for Liverpool.

"I never kissed the Liverpool badge,'' he said. "Never. No. Kissed the badge? No. I never did. I never did when I was at Atletico Madrid, and I love Atletico, my former club. I see some players doing that when they join a club but the romance in football has gone. It's a different thing now. People are coming and leaving. When you are joining a club you want to do the best for yourself and that club and that's all.

"Some people like to kiss the badge. They can do it. I only want to score goals and do my job and achieve all the targets the team has. When I was born in Madrid I was not a Liverpool fan or a Chelsea fan. I was only an Atletico Madrid fan. I still am. Maybe it's the only badge I will kiss if I have to kiss one.''

Many have speculated as to the sort of reception Torres will receive from his former supporters, but he is sure that on the field at least, he will be given a friendly welcome, citing captain Steven Gerrard as one who has wished him the best with his new club.

He added: "He was one of the first ones who called me and said if I left, if I stayed, he would help me and support me. Maybe because he was in that situation first. He's been a very good friend and team-mate from the first to the last day. He only wanted the best for me and said he'd agree with whatever decision I made.''

He added: "I think 'traitor' makes no sense. I played three very good seasons there, left massive money there, lots of goals, good performances. I'm very happy with everything I did there. Maybe it's too soon to ask for a good reception. I'm not expecting that. But it would be a surprise for me if I get a very bad reception.''

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