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Page last updated at 13:47 GMT, Friday, 28 January 2011

Liverpool reject Chelsea bid for Fernando Torres


Ancelotti respects Liverpool on Torres

Liverpool have rejected an offer for star striker Fernando Torres from Premier League rivals Chelsea.

The 26-year-old has struggled for form so far this season but has scored nine goals in 26 appearances for the Reds.

"Chelsea have made a bid for Fernando, which has been turned down. The player is not for sale," a Liverpool spokesman told BBC Sport.

The offer is believed to be in the region of £35-£40m and comes after a previous bid by the London club in May.

Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti refused to talk about the situation but said he is happy that "the club are trying to do everything they can to improve the squad".

With the transfer window open until 2300 GMT on Monday, there is still time for the Blues to increase their offer for the Spaniard should they wish.

Ancelotti said: "I don't want to speak about this, you will have to ask the club. He is not my player and I have to have respect for Liverpool.

"I'm not surprised, because I know very well what the club is doing now. I am happy because the club is doing a fantastic job in this transfer market."


Liverpool have had a £23m bid for Ajax's Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez accepted as they look to bolster their attacking options.

The Merseysiders have also had a £4m bid for midfielder Charlie Adam rejected by Blackpool and have sold forward Ryan Babel to Hoffenheim.

Torres' indifferent start to the season comes after a knee injury, which also hampered him at the World Cup in South Africa last summer.

And although he scored twice in the Reds' 2-0 win over Chelsea in November, Torres looked a forlorn figure under previous Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson.

But the Spaniard has looked a different prospect since Kenny Dalglish took over at Anfield earlier in January, scoring three goals in his last four games.

Liverpool moved up to seventh in the Premier League table following their 1-0 victory over Fulham on Wednesday, but they still face a fight to qualify for the Champions League next season, with Chelsea nine points ahead of them in fourth spot.

Although Ancelotti's team have failed to fully replicate their form of last term where they won the Premier League title, they are still in the Champions League and are currently 10 points behind league leaders Manchester United.

Ancelotti has previously hinted that he wanted to bring in new players to bolster an ageing squad stretched by injuries this season.

And with the club close to signing Benfica defender David Luiz, the bid for Torres shows that Chelsea are still prepared to use their financial muscle to boost their domestic and European ambitions.

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see also
Friday's gossip column
28 Jan 11 |  Gossip
Liverpool sign Suarez for 22.7m
31 Jan 11 |  Liverpool
Chelsea complete signing of Luiz
01 Feb 11 |  Chelsea
Liverpool complete Torres signing
04 Jul 07 |  Europe
Dalglish hails Torres & Meireles
22 Jan 11 |  Premier League

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