Chelsea have been encouraged in their pursuit of Atletico Madrid striker Radamel Falcao. The Sunday Mirror says the Spanish club have expressed an interest in re-signing Fernando Torres at the end of the season.

And that means Chelsea can now pursue a deal that would see Torres ­return to Atletico and ­Falcao move to Stamford Bridge.

But Chelsea's valuation of Torres and his £175,000-a-week wages will provide the biggest stumbling block.

But Chelsea will be ­desperate to offload Torres and sign Falcao, who has a ­£46million release clause in his Atletico contract.

A Spanish source said: "Despite all his problems at Chelsea, Torres is still held in great affection at Atletico and he would be welcomed back."