Torres: I've joined a "top level" club
February 1, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff
New Chelsea striker Fernando Torres has spoken of his delight at securing a move to Stamford Bridge, but may have angered Liverpool fans with his comments on signing for the Blues - saying he has now joined "one of the top clubs in the world".
PA PhotosA picture of Fernando Torres is ripped up outside Liverpool's Melwood training ground
Torres, a British-record £50 million capture, was idolised by Liverpool fans, but his suggestion that Chelsea are a bigger club than Liverpool will not go down well on Merseyside.
Angry Reds fans burned shirts with Torres' name on the back outside the club's Melwood training complex on Monday night, while a picture was torn in half and left on the ground.
Torres, who will not be in the squad to play at Sunderland on Tuesday night, could make his debut against his old side as early as Sunday when the two teams meet in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge.
"It's the kind of team I like to play against. It's the kind of team I want to play for,'' he told Chelsea TV. "It's always very tough to play against Chelsea - one of the biggest teams in Europe, always fighting for everything.
"This is the target for every footballer - to try to play for one of the top clubs in the world and I can do it now. I have to be very, very happy as I am.
"It's my dream to win the Champions League and I'm sure I can, playing for Chelsea. I think all my team-mates share that dream with me and hopefully we can.
"I am a big fan of all of the Chelsea strikers. When I was very young I remember Anelka was playing for Arsenal. It's the kind of football I like to play.
"Obviously Drogba is the best striker in the world by far. It's a big responsibility for me to play alongside them because the level they have is so high.
"I am so happy and so proud to be here, finally, after these tough days. At the of the day I can say I'm a Chelsea player and I'm very, very happy.
"It has been two, three, four very, very hard days for me especially for everything I have leaving Liverpool but I can say I'm a Chelsea player. I'm really happy and I'm sure I'm doing one of the biggest steps forward in my career, joining a club like Chelsea.
"I just want to be at the level I'm supposed to stay at. It's a great club with a great responsibility. I'm prepared for the challenge.''
Torres now wants a debut goal against Liverpool, but insisted he has nothing but good memories of his time at the club.
"It is like destiny,'' Torres said of the prospect of playing on Sunday. "It is not perfect for me but we will see what happens and I only have good words about Liverpool. They made me a top player and gave me the chance to play at the top level.
"I will never say anything bad about Liverpool. I have been very happy there, but now the history is different and I am playing for Chelsea. If I have the chance to play, I will do my best for Chelsea and hopefully I can score.
"I felt from last summer that I needed to do a step forward in my career and for my ambition as a footballer. I am joining a team that is at the top level. There is not another level after Chelsea.
"Also, I wanted to join because Chelsea always have shown a big respect for me. They really want me and it is important when you have the support of the people in the club, and the support of the fans who always showed respect to me when I came to Stamford Bridge and at Anfield
"When I played against Chelsea, there was always a big motivation because it was a special game - it was always one of the biggest games of the season,'' Torres said.
"I want to say thanks to the Chelsea fans because I have seen them very, very happy with me for joining Chelsea. If they are happy as well because I am not going to score any more against them then it is good.
"I have good memories and bad memories of games against Chelsea. All the goals are good memories because all of them are special. I have a very bad memory of the semi-final of the Champions League in my first season in England when they beat us and they played the final and not us.
"It was a frustrating day for me but hopefully now I am here we can go through to the final together and win. The Champions League is a big ambition and all the footballers want to play in it. It is a very important competition.
"But also Chelsea have the chance every season to win all the trophies that they play for, so when you have the chance to play in a team like this, you cannot say no.''
Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish told the club's official website: "We're disappointed that he's gone but the football club will continue and the football club will try its best to move on and go from strength to strength.
"The football club will appreciate people that have been here and had a go for the club but it won't dwell on the past. We'll look forward and look upwards hopefully. There is no one anywhere in the world at any stage who is any bigger or any better than this football club.''
David Luiz, 23, like Torres signed a five-and-a-half-year deal and said on Chelsea's website: "I am delighted to be joining a big English club, and I know very well the quality that Chelsea has.
"It is a major challenge for me but I am determined and confident in my ability to adapt to this excellent league, and I look forward to meeting my new team-mates.''
Luiz will not be eligible for the Blues' Champions League knockout stage campaign after featuring for Benfica this season.