Fernando Torres described Tuesday evening’s cup win by a much-changed Chelsea side as an important step in the quest for success on many fronts this season.
The striker, who opened the scoring in a 2-0 victory over Swindon, was in the starting line-up for the first time in four games and was one of nine changes from the previous outing. With the whole squad required to be ready to perform when needed, the potential tricky tie at the League One outfit was a worthy test.
‘It was good minutes for the players who have not been involved in the last matches, so everyone is happy to be involved in the line-up and it is one more step forward,’ said Torres after the game.
‘It was very tough because always in the cup when you play away against teams in the lower divisions they show what football is about – the passion and the intensity when playing against a top team.
‘We know this from our experience in previous seasons so we are very happy with the performance of the team.’
It was for his overall industry and performance level as much as for his goal that Torres wished to be judged on the night, adding:
‘We have players with the quality to win games and great players individually, and in the last couple of years we have been improving as a team a lot.
‘If we work harder than the opponent, normally we win the game because we have enough quality to do that. This is something we have to improve, we need to work hard from the first minute to the end – every player. This is something the manager wants from all of us and in this game we have shown we are improving on that point, and it is something very important for winning games.
‘We know the season is long,’ he said, ‘and we will have the chance to play important games. We are in the manager’s plans. We have 25 very good players in the squad and it is difficult to play in this great team, but we are fighting for the positions.
‘It is the manager’s decision so to keep working hard is the only chance to start all the games.’