Fernando Torres could be about to join a star-studded list of Champions League winners to make the leap to the MLS.
The MLS has seen an influx of Champions League winners over the last decade and former Liverpool and Chelsea striker Fernando Torres is the next big name linked with a move. Following his departure from Atletico Madrid this summer, Torres has made it clear a move within Spain is not possible.
“I will not continue in Spain. Europe? I don’t know. One has an idea that can then change.”
“I have not made the decision. I will say it as I have said: that I leave Atletico…” he told Spanish radio station Cadena SER.
So is the MLS a suitable destination instead? Well previous Champions League winners have thrived in the environment. Torres’ former Chelsea strike partner Didier Drogba enjoyed a season with Montreal scoring 21 goals in 33 games. The man supplying both forwards in their time at Chelsea, Frank Lampard, netted 15 times in just 29 games.
Fernando Torres joins Wayne Rooney in being the high-prolife former Champions League winners linked with the MLS this summer. Although Torres’ destination is still unclear, Rooney seems set on a move to the capital with DC United. Its rumoured in a matter of days it’ll be announced the England legend will sign a three-year contract worth $3m a year on top of his subsidised salary from Everton and Manchester United worth $10m a year.
Joining Rooney could be 2012 Champions League winner Torres. His arrival in Major League Soccer is yet to be confirmed but after ruling out Spain and considering his age, at least one season in the MLS is appealing. Champions League winning forwards have a pedigree for success in the MLS. Drogba, Ibrahimović and David Villa have scored a combined 99 goals in just 148 games.
Entering the MLS would see the former Atletico Madrid front man join other notable Champions League winners Ashley Cole and Bastian Schweinsteiger, who won the competition with Bayern Munich in 2013, a year after Torres’s Chelsea.
Possible destinations for Torres include San Jose, New York Red Bulls and Minnesota; MLS sides that could accommodate the 34 year old’s designated player wage.