h/t to mixedknuts
Can we have this guy back? I hear he wasn't so bad.
We've all seen a change in Fernando Torres' play. Instead of acting like a reference pint or attacking spaces , he's been known to come towards the ball and receive in in non-threatening places. Some argue that this helps with link-up play. This is why the argument is invalid.
This is from a critique of Giroud but everything here applies doubly to Torres
The second thing that bugs me are the percentages. People always say "you want your forwards involved in build-up play." This is a general truism, but it makes sense. You want all of your attacking players involved in build-up play because it moves the defense around, and makes your attack less predictable.
But what if your forward isn’t very good at passing the ball?
On good teams, forwards make a minimum of 20 passes a game, and most are closer to 25 passes per game, almost all of which are in the opponent’s final third. Nearly every single errant pass kills an attack dead.
This is what the chart looks like for errant passes at the different passing success percentages.
A 65% passer kills five more attacks per game with a bad pass than an 85% passer. That’s a significant number, especially if you want this player to regularly be involved. Obviously there are plenty of other ways to look at loss of possession stats, but passing percentage is pretty important. This is especially true if most of your outfielders complete 85% or more like at Arsenal.
For reference whoscored has Torres' passing percentage at 69.5%. His poor passing along with his alarming tendency to get dispossessed kills promising attacks and leaves the defense open to counterattacks.
TLDR. Torres is bad at football (and has been bad at football for several seasons) and when he plays football, he actively makes our team significantly worse.