Does the Spanish hitman have a point? Are players like him being kicked (literally) out of the Premier League? Or is he just being a big girl’s blouse who needs to man up and stop whinging?
“I just can’t imagine what state I’ll be in within five or six years if I continue to play here – it could easily give me problems when I stop playing. The physical level is superior to all other countries.” – Torres.
The striker is currently facing a race for fitness to make the World Cup in South Africa and it is understandable that whilst recovering from knee surgery he is a little worried about his health playing in such a tough league. We all know that the Premier League is quick and physical, but is it just a case of Torres being fragile?
After seeing Eduardo da Silva, Abou Diaby, and Aaron Ramsey suffer nasty leg breaks off the back of hard challenges Arsene Wenger, his captain and the Arsenal fans would all argue that something must be done about the overly physical approach sometimes adopted in the league.
The English top flight is arguably the strongest in the world and should be attracting the world’s best players and it is important to hold onto the likes of Torres. Cristiano Ronaldo has already left these shores for La Liga. His reasons for going to Real Madrid were more to do with his desire to play for his boyhood club than the fact he was kicked about in England. But surely a league which is known for its technical prowess and skill is more likely to attract the crème de la crème than the promise of being kicked around by enforcers like Marouane Fellaini, Alex Song and Darren Fletcher (who made the PFA team of the season ahead of Frank Lampard, go figure).
In defence of the physical nature of the Premier League many of its fans may point to the likes of 31-year-old Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard, who has more or less played in the English top flight for his entire career and he rarely (if ever) misses a game for the Blues. Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney are other examples of players that just dust themselves off and get on with it, which amazes Torres, who suggests that the brutal demands of the English league wears a player down both physically and mentally.
Perhaps the whole suggestion is being overplayed and Torres is angling for a move away from Anfield this summer. The Reds have little chance of making the Champions League and even face a battle for a Europa League spot as they are currently languishing in 7th place. His future at Liverpool looks increasingly uncertain as his manager Rafa Benitez is being courted by Juventus and Real Madrid, the former claim that a deal is already in place for Rafa to take charge of the Old Lady next season.
Despite his injury problems this term the forward has netted 18 goals in 22 league games, which will have left the Anfield faithful wondering what might have been if he had stayed fit. But more importantly, should the Liverpool and other Prem fans be more concerned that players of Torres’ calibre are being kicked out of our league?