EXCLUSIVE: Torres feeling blue again ahead of Juve clash… as it emerges Liverpool considered shock summer reunion
06:34 GMT, 18 September 2012
After storming down the tunnel at Loftus Road on Saturday, Fernando Torres found little to smile about at Chelsea's training ground on Monday.
The 50million striker is retreating into his shell again, making his displeasure known after he was substituted nine minutes from time against QPR.
Torres expects to start against Juventus on Wednesday night as Chelsea begin the defence of the Champions League, but his confusing body language is cause for concern.
Not again: Fernando Torres was unable to grab a goal against QPR on Saturday
At times he has hankered after a return to Liverpool, the club who converted him from lethal finisher to world-class forward after his move from Atletico Madrid in 2007.
Had Damien Comolli, Liverpool's former director of footballer strategy, got his way it could easily have happened after he explored the extraordinary possibility of re-signing the striker.
In February this year, Comolli was stunned when a prominent member of the Liverpool dressing room knocked on the door to his office and pleaded with him to investigate the proposition.
Torres had been sold by Liverpool a year earlier, taking a pay cut to sign for Chelsea on a five-year deal, but had struggled to settle into his rhythm.
Carlo Ancelotti, the manager when Torres arrived, had been fired after Chelsea's failure to defend the Premier League or win the European Cup.
Last season, between October 19 and March 18, the striker went five months – or 25 hours and 40 minutes – without scoring.
Audacious: Damien Comolli considered swooping for Fernando Torres to re-sign him for Liverpool
Andre Villas-Boas, sacked during the barren run, even moved Juan Mata's peg in the Chelsea dressing room to help the Spanish pair settle in.
Nothing appeared to click. At Liverpool, Comolli considered whether to put forward the unthinkable when he flew to Florida to discuss the summer transfer targets with Liverpool's owners John W Henry and Tom Werner.
Liverpool's players were used to Torres' ways, ducking out of social nights and rounds of golf with his team-mates and Torres had been a cult figure at Anfield, scoring 65 goals in 102 appearances in the Barclays Premier League.
It was a mouth-watering prospect for Comolli as he sifted through the statistics.
The 28-year-old scored 81 goals on Merseyside, with 56 of them resulting from a defence-splitting pass.
The Liverpool way suited the Spain striker and at least one player in that dressing room said Luis Suarez would benefit if they could be paired together.
The Uruguayan had been signed in January 2011 as a second striker and Comolli knew he would not be able to match his incredible goalscoring ratio in the Dutch Eredivisie with Ajax.
Summer target: Chelsea were linked with a move for Falcao (right) through the summer
Comolli worked on his own rule of thumb that, with the exception of Ruud van Nistelrooy, strikers imported from Holland only score around a third of the goals in the Premier League.
Suarez scored 81 times in 110 appearances at Ajax; he has 17 in 48 appearances in the Premier League.
Dirk Kuyt scored 71 times in 98 appearances for Feyenoord; at Anfield, he scored 51 goals in 208 appearances.
So Comolli was excited about the prospect of re-signing Torres, but it was a transfer fraught with difficulties.
He expected the fee to be prohibitive and that Roman Abramovich would be an unwilling seller.
Comolli did not get the chance to pursue it, after he was fired without warning by Werner and Henry on April 12 this year, two days before the FA Cup semi-final with Everton.
Next up: Chelsea will take on Juventus on Wednesday in the Champions League
Two weeks later, Torres scored against Barcelona in injury time of the Champions League semi-final to put Chelsea through to face Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena.
After winning the Champions League final, Torres claimed: 'I have been through the worst moments of my career during the season.
'I felt they treated me in a way I was not expecting.'
Despite his side being linked with Atletico striker Falcao, this term Torres is the focal point of Chelsea's attack, the main striker in a system designed specifically for his assets.
He has scored twice in the Premier League this season, but Roberto Di Matteo's system has some mild teething problems.
Wednesday evening, against a resurgent Juventus, is the right time to administer some painkillers.