Fernando Torres has stressed that he and Jose Mourinho shared an excellent relationship during his lone season working under the Chelsea manager.
The 30-year-old Spanish striker ended a disappointing three-and-a-half-year spell with the Blues last week when he joined AC Milan for the remaining two seasons of his contract, replacing the departed Mario Balotelli as the Italian club’s main man up top.
Mourinho often bemoaned his side’s lack of a reliable goalscorer during the 2013-14 campaign, with Torres netting just five times in 28 league appearances, as fellow front men Demba Ba and Samuel Eto’o also struggled, but the former Liverpool star insists there were no issues between him and the Portuguese boss.
'I had a very good relationship with Jose,' he told reporters at his first official press conference. 'When I was signed by Milan he wished me all the best. He spoke about the passion that the city of Milan has for football and that I would settle in well. I learnt a lot from him as a coach. Perhaps in the future our paths will meet again.'
Torres further praised Mourinho when told how his former coach had vouched for his professionalism during talks with AC Milan counterpart Filippo Inzaghi.
'I think it's a philosophy for success,' he said. 'If you can get a strong group of characters and bond them together then everything is easier. The football is one part, but acting like a professional is equally important.
'I appreciate those words and I don't think I need to say anything else. We are professionals and always have to have that attitude when you play or when you do not play. I've had great teammates who have taught me how to behave in every situation.'
Torres's struggles during his time at Chelsea were well-documented following his then-British record £50 million switch from Liverpool in the 2011 winter transfer window, scoring just 45 goals in 172 appearances, compared to the 81 he netted in 142 games during his three-and-a-half seasons at Anfield.
The 110-times capped international will now hope that a change of environment in Serie A can help reignite his once-flourishing career, and prove to his critics that he is in fact far from finished at the top of the European game.
Can Torres get his career back on track at Milan?