Chelsea boss Di Matteo dismisses Gullit criticism of Torres

The Italian has leapt to the defence of his €63 million man after the former Blues boss suggested the striker was not offering enough to the west London side
Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo has claimed he is happy with the contribution of club record signing Fernando Torres, despite recent criticism from former Blues boss Ruud Gullit.

Gullit gave a damning assessment of Torres' input after the midweek Champions League draw with Juventus, insisting that the Spain man must start improving if he is to be a part of the team in the long-term future.

"For me he must do more. It is not good enough," Gullit said as a panelist on Sky Sports. "He has had maybe one shot in the whole match, at times it is like Chelsea are playing with ten men. At the moment he is an enigma, he has to start performing – and quickly.”

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Despite the outspoken opinions of the Dutchman, Di Matteo moved quickly to play down suggestions that he was unhappy with Torres' form.

“We’re happy with him," insisted Di Matteo, speaking in his pre-match press conference ahead of the club's game with Stoke. "Even when he doesn’t score he either provides or works hard for the team. There are no issues for us.

"He’s always keeping defenders busy, moving and doing the right stuff. He’s full of confidence and he’s playing well and scoring goals. He hasn’t scored in the last couple of games, but he’s scored before."

It's no secret that Torres has struggled to adapt to life at Stamford Bridge since his big-money move from Liverpool in January 2011.

However, there was real belief the striker had turned a corner in the first games of this season, with some positive link-up play alongside Eden Hazard leading to him netting twice.

"Bringing in others is not in discussion at the moment," Di Matteo added when questioned on strengthening his attacking options. "We are happy with our forward and hopefully [Daniel] Sturridge will be fit soon as well.”

Di Matteo also had to shrug off speculation that his own job might be under threat, after chairman Roman Abramovich was spotted at the club's training ground.

"He actually comes quite often, to be honest," Di Matteo explained. "He likes to be involved and he comes down whenever he can."

"I just have to focus on my job and try to prepare the players and the team to the best for the next game."