For the third year in a row Chelsea FC have avoided bringing in any players on deadline day of the January transfer window. In 2011 however, Chelsea made a giant splash in the transfer market with the purchases of David Luiz and Fernando Torres. Torres was bought for an English record £50 million and Luiz was brought in for £25 million with Nemanja Matic sent the other way. Both players have made significant impacts on the club and have won their fair share of titles since joining the Blues.
David Luiz’s Chelsea career got off to a blistering start, earning man of the match honors in his first start and PFA Player of the Month honors in March, his second month with the club. He became a cult figure and fan favorite for his buccaneering style, spectacular goals, and winning attitude. His enthusiasm for the game and love of all things Chelsea have earned him a place in the hearts of Chelsea fans worldwide. It’s not everyday that a superstar and established international is also known for his every-man attitude and good nature.
For many Chelsea fans, his emphatic penalty in the 2012 Champions League final against Bayern Munich sealed his status as a club legend. Recently, Luiz has seen less opportunities in central defense and has even played in midfield on occasion. He is the third choice center back behind John Terry and Gary Cahill but his physicality, aerial ability, ball skills, and excellent long range shooting make him a threat anywhere on the field.
Fernando Torres is one of the most divisive figures to ever put on a Chelsea shirt. His huge price tag ensured he would come to Stamford Bridge with even bigger expectations. To make things worse, he was seen as the replacement for Chelsea legend and the new “King of Stamford Bridge” Didier Drogba. There were also whispers that Torres never fully recovered from his knee injuries and that surgery had robbed him of his pace. His first season at Chelsea was a disaster as he endured a 903 minute goal drought and only scored one goal for the club. The only bright side was that Torres had nowhere to go but up.
The following season was not much better in terms of goals as he only managed 11 goals in 49 appearances but there were flashes of El Nino getting some of the pep back in to his step. The 2011/12 season saw Torres score his first hat-trick for Chelsea, important goals in the FA Cup campaign, a legendary breakaway goal against Barcelona in the Champions League, and won the corner that set up Drogba’s equalizer in the Champions League final. Torres’s 2012/13 season saw him become Chelsea’s first choice striker and he was the key man in the club’s run to a Europa League trophy.
Chelsea supporters agree that Torres will likely never regain his Liverpool form but there have been significant improvements since his first season. He appears to have gained some of his old confidence back and he now plays with an aggression and passion that was severely lacking early on. Torres will never shed the label of being one of the worst transfers in Chelsea history in terms of value but he has been instrumental in helping the club earning more silverware. He has won nearly every trophy in both club and international football short of a Premiership title. His contract expires in 2016 so he has a few more chances to win the Premier League but for the sake of Chelsea fans those chances hopefully come with Torres being the second or third choice striker.
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