Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech is convinced Fernando Torres' jaw-dropping miss against Manchester United will not prove a fatal setback in the striker's bid to shake off his dreadful run in front of goal.
Chelsea's 3-1 Barclays Premier League defeat at Old Trafford yesterday saw Torres back to his best in every respect apart from his finishing.
The £50million man did finally manage to net the second goal of his 24-match Blues career with a well-taken effort at the start of the second half but he should have had a hat-trick and produced one of the worst open-goal howlers in Premier League history after brilliantly rounding David De Gea.
Torres sunk to the turf in despair as United supporters taunted the beleaguered forward and the striker looked just as distraught at the final whistle.
But goalkeeper Cech said: "This is one thing in football that happens and what he can remember is he played really well and scored a great goal.
"I can see every time the guy is improving.
"At Stoke, he had a brilliant match and was unlucky not to score.
"The last match, he created both goals against Bayer Leverkusen and against United he created a huge chance for Ramires in the first half, which if he'd left for Daniel Sturridge, it would have been a simple tap-in.
"He also scored a great goal and then got himself another opportunity and, unfortunately, I don't know what happened.
"But I am not worried about it, he will score goals."
Cech added: "Everybody is counting goals with strikers and it is always like that.
"But if you see Dimitar Berbatov, for example, he got into United not only because he can score goals but because he also created 30 for Tottenham every season.
"That's why they brought him to United and Torres is doing the same. He scores goals and can create them.
"Ideally, you want your striker to score but if Torres creates two goals every game then who cares?"
Yesterday's defeat saw Chelsea slip five points behind United but manager Andre Villas-Boas refused to panic after watching his side arguably dominate the game.
Cech revealed the 33-year-old had been equally calm in the dressing room after what was his first league defeat in 17 months.
"He was no different to us," the Czech Republic star said.
"We know we didn't take our chances in the first half and that we didn't play well.
"But we have to be very positive about the way we came back and fought to the last second in the second half - that is basically what he told us as well.
"We know that we lost the game but we did enough to get something out of it.
"Every game, we are improving. The score doesn't reflect how we played. Some people could say that 3-1 looks an easy game for them but that was not the case.
"We conceded three goals in the first half which is not ideal.
"But if you count the chances, they scored from the free-kick where there was a doubt over it being offside, then a wonder goal from Nani and then a lucky deflection for Wayne Rooney's goal. That was it more or less.
"You could see that this was a game between two teams in form and the difference was that they took their chances and we didn't take ours."
Villas-Boas may not have been a manager for very long, but he has already learned the valuable art of stressing the positives and not lambasting his own players.
Chelsea came unstuck yesterday due to a combination of not taking their chances and failing to defend properly.
Other than John Terry, nobody attempted to defend Ashley Young's free-kick for the first goal and Juan Mata was brushed away far too easily for the second. These issues need to be sorted out as quickly as soothing Torres' pain.
"It is important for us to continue to believe in our work," said Villas-Boas.
"This Premier League is unpredictable. We always consider ourselves title contenders. Now we have to try and get three points against Swansea.
"That is the right mental reaction after a defeat."Reuse content