Ex-Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand says he found it harder playing against Fernando Torres than he did Chelsea’s Didier Drogba.
Torres spent three and a half seasons at Liverpool, scoring three goals against the Red Devils, including in the 4-1 win at Old Trafford. Speaking about the Spaniard, Ferdinand said the forward was a “hard” and “aggressive” player, who wouldn’t give defenders an inch:
“Torres was hard, I was talking about this the other day. He was quick, he was strong, aggressive, ran in behind, did all the stuff you didn’t want. I was talking to [Rafa] Benitez about him actually, and he actually was a nasty guy sometimes on the pitch. Great player. He stamped on my foot once at half-time I had about four or five stitches in my foot, the ball wasn’t even there. So he had an aggressive nature. But I enjoyed games against him. Drogba didn’t actually make the game as hard for me, but he scored big goals against us.”
It is somewhat surprising to hear that Ferdinand rates Torres so highly, although the striker was in the prime of his career during his first few seasons at Anfield.
Injuries did begin to take their toll as time went by, and he never looked the same player after he moved to Chelsea during the 2011 January transfer window.
At his best, though, Torres was a complete all-rounder. He was fast, strong in the air, fearless, and very much up for the physical battle, making him perfectly suited to the Premier League.