Oscar rescues Blues as Torres angst persists

SPARTA PRAGUE 0 vs CHELSEA 1

CHELSEA substitute Oscar spared Fernando Torres’ blushes by firing a late winner in last night’s Europa League last 32, first leg clash at Sparta Prague.

Torres, who has scored just once in 13 games, missed a host of chances before Brazil midfielder Oscar started and finished a slick move eight minutes from time.

Blues manager Rafael Benitez admitted the European champions should have converted more of their 18 attempts but, with a place in the last 16 beckoning, defended the out-of-sorts £50m striker.

“We have to create more opportunities and the strikers will score more goals,” Benitez said. “Everybody expects from a striker just to score goals, but he’s also doing a great job for the team.”