Fernando Torres reveals his combined Chelsea-Liverpool XI but snubs Eden Hazard for Yossi Benayoun and Dirk Kuyt

FERNANDO TORRES has picked his best-ever combined XI of Chelsea and Liverpool players – and snubbed Eden Hazard for Yossi Benayoun.

The Spanish legend, 36, retired last season following a spell at Japanese side Sagan Tosu.

Torres enjoyed arguably his finest years at Liverpool between 2007 and 2011 before his £50million move to Chelsea – where he would spend a further four years.

The former Atletico Madrid played with a host of huge-name stars during his illustrious career, in which he won the Champions League in 2011-12.

But when asked to pick a combined XI from his days in the Premier League, Torres bizarrely left out Hazard.

After also leaving out the likes of Jamie Carragher, Juan Mata and Petr Cech, Torres told the Chelsea FC website: "I feel bad because I’ve had to leave out so many people who deserve to be in here.

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"There would be fantastic players like Eden Hazard, Juan Mata, Petr Cech and a lot of others on the bench.

"It is not easy because I could make two or three teams of people I played with at Chelsea and Liverpool, and all of them would be good enough to win the Premier League in any year.

"What I would say about that is, it shows I was really lucky to play with so many great players during my time in England, at both clubs."

Check out Torres' full XI – and his reasons for picking them – below…


Pepe Reina

HAVING played with Petr Cech at Chelsea, it was almost a straight fight between the Czech ace and Reina for the spot.

On picking the Spaniard, Torres claimed: "With Reina I shared many times in Liverpool and also in the national team.

"Petr Cech is obviously one of the best goalkeepers I ever played with, so it would be a very difficult decision as a coach to make."


Branislav Ivanovic, Sami Hyypia, John Terry, Ashley Cole

IN creating his all-time Chelsea-Liverpool back-four, Torres left out some big-name stars.

Torres explained: "‘I’ll go for a back four with Brani Ivanovic on the right. He’s a great guy, a great player and the kind of player that I would always want in my team.

"I would have Sami Hyypia and John Terry in the middle of the defence.

"[They're] two strong centre-backs who are good with the ball and without the ball.

"I think they would be a really good partnership as well.

"Then, at left-back, Ashley Cole – he always performed at a great level, in all aspects, offensive and defensive, and you can see what an amazing career he had.

"He was a great all-round player. I think that’s a really good line of four at the back."


Steven Gerrard, Xabi Alonso, Frank Lampard

TORRES described picking his midfield as the toughest decision out of the XI.

But he revealed: "The midfield might be the most difficult part, as I've been lucky to play with some fantastic midfielders.

"Obviously I have to go for Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard, both of them have to be in there.

"They are two of the best midfielders in English and Premier League history.

"They are legends to Liverpool and Chelsea, and also in the national team in England.

"I was very lucky to play with both of them and they have to be in the team.

"I played with many, many great players and I'm worried I'm going to have to leave some of them out, but I will have Xabi Alonso as the other midfielder, playing behind Gerrard and Lampard."


Dirk Kuyt, Didier Drogba, Yossi Benayoun

IT'S up front where the decisions get a little more wacky, with Kuyt and Benayoun – who played for both Liverpool and Chelsea – in ahead of the likes of Hazard.

Torres explained: "I will get Yossi Benayoun in there, who played for both Liverpool and Chelsea.

"He's a great friend and a great player.

"It was easy to play with him for me, he was always trying to give chances to the striker and looking for those small gaps that no-one can see but him.

"I will pick Dirk Kuyt on the right. He was always scoring important goals and put in a lot of hard work, always.

"It was amazing seeing the way he used to work and I don't think people really appreciated how good he was, but I could see it every day in training.

"Obviously, Didier Drogba has to be up front.

"He’s a Chelsea legend and after winning the Champions League with his equaliser at the end of the game and him scoring the last penalty, he has to be in there."

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