Can Benitez turn back the clock and use Benayoun to ignite Torres?

The Israeli midfielder has returned to Chelsea after an unsuccessful loan spell at West Ham to be reunited with Rafa Benitez, who might try and use Benayoun to reignite Fernando Torres.

Whilst most Liverpool fans will still have plenty of fond memories for all three of Rafa Benitez, Yossi Benayoun and Fernando Torres, they will be taking no little satisfaction in seeing the trio fail to produce anything like the results they did at Anfield now they are at Chelsea.

The Fernando Torres saga is now surely reaching its final stages at Stamford Bridge, with Chelsea likely to invest in one or two new superstar forwards come the summer, but these last few months of the season could represent Roman Abramovich’s final throw of the dice to get the best from his £50 million signing.

Rafa Benitez is having an even worse time of it than Torres at Chelsea, but is still the manager who got the best from the Spanish striker during his time at Liverpool, and now Yossi Benayoun is back at the bridge, a player who linked successfully with Torres under Benitez at Anfield.

None of the three are at their peak, but all will have a role to play as Chelsea try and salvage the wreckage of a season that started so spectacularly well under Roberto Di Matteo. Benayoun is clearly low down the pecking order in the attacking midfield, with Juan Mata, Eden Hazard, Victor Moses and Oscar all ahead of the Israeli, but given Benitez’s history with the player, and indeed his penchant for rotation, Benayoun could see plenty of action in the next few months.

Unless something truly drastic happens, you would expect that all three of Benitez, Benayoun and Torres will leave Chelsea in the summer. But if they can recapture a little of their Liverpool form before then they might take some happy memories from Stamford Bridge at least.

Given the rivalry that has existed between Chelsea and Liverpool for much of the last decade it is still a little odd to see Benayoun, Torres and especially Benitez on the blue half of the fence, but that will matter far less if they leave Chelsea this summer having helped the side to a successful finish to the season.

images: © wshjackson, © Ronnie Macdonald

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