Rare dry spell for 'El Nino'

LIVERPOOL striker Fernando Torres has had a rather disappointing season by his usually high standards.

El Nino, as the Spaniard is known on Meseryside, has chalked up 18 league goals so far, a far cry from the 29 he scored in all competitions in the 2007-08 season.

Liverpool have also struggled and their chances of qualifying for Europe look slim. They weren't helped by Sunday's 2-0 loss to Chelsea.

The club seems to rely heavily on Torres and England midfielder Steven Gerrard.

Unfortunately, Torres has been struggling with injuries this season and there is no doubt that if fully fit, he could have scored more than he has and perhaps Liverpool would not find themselves in the mess they are in now.

There are now fears that Torres, who scored Spain's only goal in a 1-0 over Germany in the Euro 2008 final, could miss the trip to South Africa for the 2010 Fifa World Cup after revelations that he would be undergoing knee surgery.

l Due to 2010 Fifa World Cup fever we have decided to suspend your favourite feature, Know Your Stars, until after the spectacle. We have decided to come up with a new feature - Know Your World Cup Stars - that will profile players from the 32 teams that are favourites to make it to their countries' final squads to South Africa.