Jack Cork would rather play alongside Southampton team-mate Rickie Lambert than Chelsea striker Fernando Torres.
Lambert has scored 13 goals in his debut Premier League season, more than any other English player, while the Spaniard has only managed 14 since moving to Stamford Bridge in 2011.
The Saints face off against Chelsea on Saturday and Cork believes that the Blues’ back line will have just as much to worry about as his own side.
He told reporters: “Rickie has been different class for us for the last three or four years now. For someone of his build his touch is unbelievable. He is great to have in your team.
“Torres and Ba have scored lots of goals in their career and you do not pay 50 million pounds for someone who is not any good.
“If you asked me who I would rather have in my team, I would have to say Rickie.”
Cork was a youth player at Stamford Bridge before joining the Saints permanently in the summer of 2011 and admits that the uncertainty at the very top of the club makes it hard for young players to make an impact with the west London side.
“Chelsea was massive for me and from eight years of age it was my dream to play for them,” he added.
“That was when Chelsea were doing really well and winning titles so I can understand why nobody was given a chance.
“With the managers chopping and changing there is always a lot of pressure on them to win games so it is tough to blood youngsters.”