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Pauno: Torres Is “A Complete Superstar”

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The Fire head coach had some flattering things to say about the reported transfer target

Atletico Madrid v Real Betis - La Liga Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

For the past few weeks Chicago Fire fans have had a new potential signing to argue about— Fernando Torres. Ever since Paul Tenorio dropped that nugget for Major League Soccer Soccer Dot Com, the hashtag has been alight with salivation and hand-wringing in roughly equal measure. And while we at Hot Time have our doubts about this potential signing, even we can’t deny the possible upside to such a deal.

One person who definitely seems to be onboard with a move: Fire head coach Veljko Paunovic.

In an interview with Marca, Paunovic had nothing but praise for his former Atletico Madrid teammate.

We shared many memories together,” Paunovic said. “Above all I remember his human qualities and how he has grown as a player. He is a complete superstar.”

Pauno also said that the Fire are a team that can recruit and retain top international talent, naming Bastian Schweinsteiger as an obvious example.

“We don’t talk about player who are not part of our squad, respecting that they are at other clubs,” Paunovic said. “But for sure we are able to bring in great players. We showed that when we signed Bastian. He is a player who understands his role on and off the pitch. A relaxed guy, who helps his teammates a lot, shares his experience. The truth is it’s a pleasure to have him.”

Torres’ agents say that the former Liverpool and Chelsea striker is keeping his options open, with China and the Middle East remaining possibilities for the next chapter of his career. Yet MLS is still near the front of the pack, and the Fire remain in the conversation due to Pauno’s past relationship with him and the team’s need for another consistent goalscorer besides Nemanja Nikolic. With the end of the European league season so close we can taste it, this story is likely to be resolved very soon— one way or the other.