Fernando Torres claims to be a 'better player and better person' for Chelsea woes

 

Fernando Torres today declared he was a "better player and better
person" for his turbulent first 18 months at Chelsea but admitted he
would not want to go through it again.

Torres insisted he would "change nothing that happened" to him last season because it made him "stronger than ever" and categorically denied threatening to walk away from Stamford Bridge if he was not guaranteed first-team football.

That was certainly the impression the Spain striker gave after May's Champions League final, when he revealed the depth of his despair since his record-shattering £50million move from Liverpool a year and a half ago.

Torres' fortunes have transformed dramatically since then, the 28-year-old winning the Golden Boot at the European Championship and - with Didier Drogba now out of the picture - starting this season on fire in front of goal.

He looks certain to lead the line again against former club Atletico Madrid tomorrow in the UEFA Super Cup and speaking in Monaco today, he said: "I would change nothing that happened to me last season.

"That taught me a lot of things. I learned a lot about a lot of people, in both ways. I learned a lot of things last season - good, bad. It made me a better player, a better person, and I'm stronger than ever now."

He added: "In these 18 months, I've become a better player. I have played in a different way to that I played at Liverpool.

"I can play more outside the box, associating more with my team-mates. I gave a lot of assists last season. I can mix it more."

Torres admitted that last term he felt like a teenager having to prove himself all over again.

"I'd never been on the bench like eight games in a row," he said.

"I started to understand everyone in the team. When you're playing, you don't think about these things.

"But when you're there, you understand what people go through on the bench. It was a new experience. I learned a lot of things about that, which made me a better team-mate.

"I always tried to be a good team-mate, as I was as captain in Madrid. But I lost that at Liverpool, when I was never captain.

"[At Chelsea] I went back to when I was 17 or 18, having to fight every day for my place.

"I never want to go back to that situation again."

Torres was the most expensive player ever transferred between British clubs and is likely to remain so for some time.

"The money Chelsea paid for me was never something I was worried about," he said.

"It didn't make me play badly. It was just a difficult change from Liverpool to Chelsea. The adaptation took more time than it should.

"But all these things are in the past. Let's think about the present. The future can be brilliant, even better."

He added: "You know you're going to play, or think you are, and that gives you more time to play your football.

"That's the main difference between this and the previous one-and-a-half seasons at Chelsea.

"I'm playing more minutes and the confidence is back."

Torres has doubtless been helped by Chelsea's summer signings and he was looking forward to a bright future.

"Let's enjoy now. The team is playing really well, the new players are settled and doing well, and we're in a good run now," he said.

"Let's go about winning the first trophy of the season for Chelsea tomorrow. If we do that, there'll be more to come for Chelsea."

Torres may not want to relive the recent past but was happy to reminisce about his time at Atletico, who he will face for the first time tomorrow since leaving five years ago.

"It couldn't be more special for me. Since my time at Atletico, I've felt the support of their fans," he said.

"They know I was and am one of them. I've been more than 12 years of my life there.

"It was not only my former club, but the club I support. Tomorrow is so special and I have to leave all those things apart.

"My only commitment is to win this cup. We have to beat Atletico so it's going to be about separating myself from these feelings I've had all my life.

"After the game, I'll go back to being the Atletico supporter I've always been."

PA

Sport
Alexis Sanchez has completed a £35m move to Arsenal, the club have confirmed
sportGunners complete £35m signing of Barcelona forward
Voices
Poor teachers should be fearful of not getting pay rises or losing their job if they fail to perform, Steve Fairclough, headteacher of Abbotsholme School, suggested
voicesChris Sloggett explains why it has become an impossible career path
Sport
world cup 2014
Sport
Popes current and former won't be watching the football together
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
News
Wayne’s estate faces a claim for alleged copyright breaches
newsJohn Wayne's heirs duke it out with university over use of the late film star's nickname
Arts and Entertainment
Celebrated children’s author Allan Ahlberg, best known for Each Peach Pear Plum
books
News
peopleIndian actress known as the 'Grand Old Lady of Bollywood' was 102
News
business
News
Mick Jagger performing at Glastonbury
people
Sport
Germany's Andre Greipel crosses the finish line to win the sixth stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 194 kilometers (120.5 miles) with start in Arras and finish in Reims, France
tour de franceGerman champion achieves sixth Tour stage win in Reims
Extras
indybest
Life and Style
beautyBelgian fan lands L'Oreal campaign after being spotted at World Cup
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Chocolat author Joanne Harris has spoken about the financial struggles most authors face
books
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice
Hollywood targets Asian audiences as US films enjoy record-breaking run at Chinese box office

Hollywood targets Asian audiences

The world's second biggest movie market is fast becoming the Hollywood studios' most crucial
Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app - and my mum keeps trying to hook me up!'

Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app'

Five years on from its launch and Grindr is the world's most popular dating app for gay men. Its founder Joel Simkhai answers his critics, describes his isolation as a child
Autocorrect has its uses but it can go rogue with embarrassing results - so is it time to ditch it?

Is it time to ditch autocorrect?

Matthew J X Malady persuaded friends to message manually instead, but failed to factor in fat fingers and drunk texting
10 best girls' summer dresses

Frock chick: 10 best girls' summer dresses

Get them ready for the holidays with these cool and pretty options 
Westminster’s dark secret: Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together

Westminster’s dark secret

Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Dulce et decorum est - a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Dulce et decorum est: a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality
Google tells popular music website to censor album cover art in 'sexually explicit content' ban

Naked censorship?

The strange case of Google, the music website and the nudity take-down requests