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Apr 11, 2011

Martinez: £50m Torres fee a bargain

Wigan boss Roberto Martinez believes the £50million Chelsea paid for Fernando Torres will prove to be a "bargain" despite the striker's prolonged failure to score his first Blues goal.

• Belief is key for Ancelotti
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• Chelsea 1-0 Wigan

Torres' goal-less run extended to 817 minutes as he came off the bench in Chelsea's 1-0 win over Wigan on Saturday, although he impeded goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi in the scramble that led to Florent Malouda's winner.

Martinez is convinced the goal should not have stood but he nonetheless believes fellow Spaniard Torres will more than justify his price-tag in the long run.

Martinez said: "Fernando Torres is going to be a bargain for Chelsea at the end of his contract. I have no doubts about it. It's difficult now. There's a lot of expectation. When he came on, he was a real threat. He fouls the keeper and he gets three points for the team. And that's experience that you buy with that sort of player.''

Martinez also said the sheer goal-scoring potential of Chelsea's underperforming strikeforce means the Blues have every chance of earning a historic victory over Manchester United in their Champions League quarter-final second leg on Tuesday night.

"The real strength of Chelsea is that they don't need to play well to score goals," he said. "You've got (Didier) Drogba, (Nicolas) Anelka, Torres when he came on, Frank Lampard, Malouda. That's a real strength of this team. That's why you can never write Chelsea off in the Champions League. They can score goals from nothing.''

Chelsea need to overcome a 1-0 deficit from Stamford Bridge and a record that shows United have never lost a European tie having won away in the first leg if they are to progress to the Champions League semi-finals.

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