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Di Matteo concern over Torres burnout

Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo is worried that he is overworking striker Fernando Torres due to a striker shortage in his squad.

Torres is the only Blues player to feature in every game this season, but a lack of alternatives, coupled with Daniel Sturridge’s persistent injury troubles, means Di Matteo is heavily reliant on the Spain international.

Despite spending around 100 million euros over the close season on new additions for his squad, Di Matteo failed to add to his front-line options, and he is now lamenting his dearth of attacking options.

“There are no signs of Fernando being burned out at the moment, but it’s something we have to look at,” Di Matteo told reporters.

“This is our seventh game in 21 days and with the intensity and tempo of these matches it’s going to be very difficult for anyone to play in them all.

“Daniel Sturridge was injured three weeks ago and we were hoping he’d be fit for this game.”

Sturridge’s injury means Torres will feature once again for Chelsea, who loaned their only other striker Romelu Lukaku to West Brom.

But Di Matteo has no qualms about loaning the Belgium forward, insisting the youngster needed more regular playing time to kick-start his development.

“Romelu needs to play to improve,” he said. “I’m not sure how much chance he’d have got this year.”

Sat 6 October, 2012
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