Chelsea defender Cesar Azpilicueta has tweeted a heartfelt goodbye message to club and international teammate Fernando Torres, with the Spanish striker set to join AC Milan on a two-year loan deal.
The Serie A-bound frontman has struggled badly since joining Chelsea from Liverpool in January 2011 for a then-British record £50 million fee, scoring just 45 goals in 172 appearances, compared to the 81 he netted in 142 games during his three-and-a-half seasons at Anfield.
His compatriot Azpilicueta, meanwhile, has enjoyed somewhat more success following his £7 million move from Marseille in August 2012, making close to 100 appearances for the Blues in his two terms at Stanford Bridge, while featuring at both full-back positions.
The 25-year-old shortly joined Torres in the Spanish national team setup after his Chelsea switch, making his debut in February 2013, before the pair would go on to be named together in the 23-man World Cup squad this summer.
Azpilicueta has already seen fellow Spainard Juan Mata leave for Manchester United earlier this year, but the club’s Iberian continent has been restocked in recent months, with the arrivals of Diego Costa from Atletico Madrid and Cesc Fabregas from Barcelona for a combined £52 million.
Nevertheless, the former Osasuna man will no doubt find it strange not having Torres in the same dressing room when Jose Mourinho’s side face Everton on Saturday at Goodison Park.