Torres starts on Madrid return

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iol spt apr22 Torres Getty Images Fernando Torres started up front for Chelsea on his return to the Vicente Calderon as a visiting player for the first time. Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Madrid - Fernando Torres started up front for Chelsea on his return to the Vicente Calderon as a visiting player for the first time for their Champions League semi-final first leg match with Atletico Madrid on Tuesday.

Torres, who made over 200 appearances for Atletico before joining Liverpool in 2007, was preferred to Demba Ba as the lone striker in the absence of the injured Samuel Eto'o.

Jose Mourinho made four changes in all from the side that started the 2-0 win against Paris Saint-Germain which sealed the Londoners place in the semi-finals two weeks ago.

Branislav Ivanovic and Eden Hazard miss out through suspension and injury respectively, whilst Oscar is dropped to the bench.

Ashley Cole makes a rare appearance at left-back, whilst the power of Ramires and John Obi Mikel is restored to the midfield.

On-loan Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois starts for Atletico against his parent club as Diego Simeone made three changes to the side that beat Barcelona to ensure their place in the last four for the first time in 40 years.

Fit-again top scorer Diego Costa starts up front and is supported by Diego Ribas as David Villa and Adrian Lopez drop to the bench.

Former Chelsea midfielder Tiago also misses out against his old club as Mario Suarez comes into midfield.

Starting line-ups:

Atletico Madrid (4-4-1-1)

Thibaut Courtois; Juanfran, Diego Godin, Miranda, Filipe Luis; Koke, Gabi (capt), Mario Suarez, Raul Garcia; Diego Ribas; Diego Costa.

Coach: Diego Simeone (ARG)

Chelsea (4-2-3-1)

Petr Cech; Cesar Azpilicueta, Gary Cahill, John Terry (capt), Ashley Cole; David Luiz, John Obi Mikel; Willian, Frank Lampard, Ramires; Fernando Torres

Coach: Jose Mourinho (POR)

Referee: Jonas Eriksson (SWE)

Sapa-AFP



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