Liverpool have stressed that striker Fernando Torres is not for sale after turning down a bid from Chelsea.
Liverpool have stressed that Fernando Torres is not for sale
"Chelsea have made a bid for Fernando which has been turned down"
- Club spokesman
The Reds have slapped a "Hands Off" sign on the Spanish frontman following the emergence of a bid from Chelsea.
When presented with the story by the media on Thursday night, a LFC spokesman dismissed any notion that the Spain international was for sale.
"Chelsea have made a bid for Fernando which has been turned down," the spokesman said. "The player is not for sale."
With the transfer window due to close at 11pm on Monday 31st January, there is still time for Chelsea to return with a better offer.
But so far the Stamford Bridge side, who were linked with a move for the striker in the summer, have been told in no uncertain terms that the 26-year-old is not available.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is a known long-time admirer of the Spain international but has been unsuccessful in past attempts to lure the player away from Anfield and Liverpool are determined to fend off any new interest.
There has been much speculation about Torres' future but it began to grow after the club finished seventh in the Barclays Premier League.
He returned to Merseyside as a World Cup winner but, with Chelsea seemingly prepared to make a bid, he insisted his commitment to the Reds was the same as when he signed in the summer of 2007.
However, his - and the club's - early-season form did little to dispel those rumours as the striker cut a frustrated and agitated figure on the pitch as Liverpool endured their worst start to a campaign since 1953/54.
But since the appointment of Kenny Dalglish to replace Roy Hodgson nearly three weeks ago Torres has looked a rejuvenated player and in his last four matches has scored three times.