Mid-Day Ticker: Torres faces drop against Napoli, FA Cup draw set, and more

Mid-Day Ticker: Torres faces drop against Napoli, FA Cup draw set, and more


Mid-Day Ticker: Torres faces drop against Napoli, FA Cup draw set, and more


Torres getty

Fernando Torres' time may have finally run out.

The big-money striker has been largely unimpressive in Didier Drogba's absence and was taken off at halftime of Chelsea's 1-1 draw with Birmingham in the FA Cup. Now manager Andres Villas-Boas is rumored to drop the Spaniard to the bench for Tuesday's massive Champions League trip to Napoli.

Torres has scored just three goals in 34 appearances for Chelsea. Drogba is likely to make the start in his place and even 18-year-old Romelu Lukaku has an opportunity to see some playing time over Torres.

Chelsea is still fighting for fourth place in the Premier League and will likely be the last English team left in the Champions League. The future of Andres Villas Boas will largely depend on his performances in Europe.

Here are some more stories to keep you going this afternoon.


The quarterfinal draw of the FA Cup is noticeably devoid of big-name teams as a number of upsets and early-round draws between the larger teams gives hope to a few Cinderella stories. Chelsea and Spurs face fifth-round replays but already know their opponents should they take care of business against lower-league opposition. Here is the quarterfinal draw with Everton vs. Sunderland the highlight of the round.

Chelsea/Birmingham vs. Leicester
Everton vs. Sunderland
Liverpool vs. Stoke
Stevenage/Tottenham vs. Bolton


Iranian club team Sepahan has canceled a scheduled friendly with Serbian side Partizan Belgrade due to Avram Grant's Israeli citizenship, according to the manager. A statement posted on the club's website called the decision "shameful" and drew a strong defense from the former Chelsea and West Ham manager.

"I never mixed politics with sports," he said. "I had worked with many [Muslims] while I was in England, and I made friends with many of them."

Partizan had to switch their training facility from Dubai to Antayla due to Grant's citizenship.


Sir Alex Ferguson's lengthy rein at the helm of Manchester United is sure to come in the next few seasons but the legendary Scottish manager doesn't want to leave Old Trafford all together. Ferguson said in an interview with BBC Radio that he wants to stay on as manager for two or three more seasons and would like to end his tenure on a winning note.

The ambassador role would be similar to the one Sir Bobby Charlton currently has.


What do you think of today's stories? Should Torres be dropped? Offended by Iran's actions? Excited for the FA Cup?

Share your thoughts below.

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