Former Liverpool boss Hodgson backs Fernando Torres to rediscover form

Chelsea travels to the Hawthorns on Saturday and the former Anfield manager is not remotely surprised that their manager, Andre Villas-Boas, is under so much pressure

Chelsea striker Fernando Torres has been backed to rediscover his “heyday” Liverpool form by West Brom boss Roy Hodgson.

“There is no doubt Fernando will be back to what he was in his heyday at Liverpool because he is a good-quality player and also a good person,” Hodgson told reporters.


The current Hawthorns boss managed the Spaniard at Anfield for the first half of last season, before he was fired and the former Atletico Madrid man went to Stamford Bridge for 50 million pounds.

Torres has struggled to score goals this season but the 63-year-old is adamant that the striker will return to his best, but was quick to hope that it is not against his West Midlands side on Saturday.

“When Fernando scores goals again, he won't be a different person but it might just be what he needs to get his season started kick-started, a good performance and some goals.

“Much as I like him and wish him well, I hope his revival doesn't start against us but, once that is out of the way, I shall be batting for him to score as many goals as he can.”

The striker is not the only man at Stamford Bridge under pressure, with manager Andre Villas-Boas facing daily questions regarding future as the club continue to underwhelm, and his West Brom counterpart is not surprised due to Chelsea's elevated status.

“One always has sympathy for other managers but I guess he knew, moving from Porto to Chelsea, for the enormous salary and big ambitions from the owner, that it wasn't going to be an easy job,” Hodgson explained.

“That's basically how it has turned out. Nothing surprises me. If you look back, there have been an awful lot of managers at Chelsea in the last eight or nine years."

He added, “If you take Jose Mourinho out of the equation, who was there for three or four years, there has been an awful lot of turnover in terms of coaches.

“I suppose you can't be surprised if you go to that club as a coach that you are under enormous scrutiny every time your team is not top of the table.”

West Brom will be underdogs at the weekend but the former Fulham manager believes that his team have an outside chance of causing an upset at the Hawthorns.

"It all depends on how well we play," Hodgson explained. “With their quality, Chelsea are capable of giving very good performances and causing problems for everyone.

"We are aware what we are up against but you win nothing on paper and with your reputation. You win if you perform."

Hodgson also praised Baggies striker Peter Odemwingie, who won the Barclays Player of the Month award on Friday for his five goals in February.

“Goals are what strikers live for; it is their bread and butter,” he said. “When they are going well, there is a spring in their step.

“His attitude has always been fine but now the goals are going in. Those goals he has got in the last two games can be the catalyst for future goals.”