Andre Villas-Boas rejects claims

SkySports reports that Chelsea boss Andre Villas Boas has rejected suggestions from Carlo Ancelotti that Fernando Torres would prosper if the club were to sell Didier Drogba.

The ex-Stamford Bridge manager believes that the struggling Spaniard is floundering due to the African striker’s continued presence at the club, but Villas Boas disagrees with this analysis.

“For me, it’s not the case,” he told reporters at a press conference.

“Fernando has been with us a year and is in a great moment of form and looking sharp.

“It’s nothing to do with one being present and the other one not. In a club of our dimension, we have top competition.

“The people you compete with are as good or better than you and you have to compete to reach the starting XI.

“It’s the same with Barcelona and Real Madrid. You compete with the best within the group,” he stated.

Drogba is currently away on international duty at the African Cup of Nations with Ivory Coast, and added responsibility will fall on Torres’ shoulders in his absence.

The veteran frontman’s contract expires at the end of the season, but Villas Boas has admitted that he has had no thoughts to sell Drogba in January to avoid losing him on a free transfer come the summer.

“It’s not something that crossed my mind.

“I count on Didier, on what he represents as a player and an icon,” he concluded.

By Gareth McKnight