Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has explained his decision to let Fernando Torres move on loan to AC Milan, claiming the "player needed a change".

Mourinho had previously said he wanted Torres to stay at the club as he wanted to have at least three strikers in his squad.

However, the Portuguese boss finally accepted to part ways with the Spaniard and replaced him with Loic Remy.

When questioned about Torres's departure, Mourinho was quoted by AS as saying: "The team and I will miss him but he needed a change.

"With all due respect that I have for all my former players, I have to say that Fernando was beyond doubt both as a person and as professional. He is is a fantastic guy and a fantastic professional. We will miss him but he needed a change.

"Torres has joined Milan and I believe the Serie A passion will motivate him. I support Inter Milan and I would have preferred him to join Inter but I hope him to do well at Milan."

Torres had previously expressed his gratitude to Mourinho even though his playing time was limited at Stamford Bridge last season.

"I had a very good relationship with Jose. 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," Torres said.

"I learnt a lot from him as a coach. Perhaps in the future our paths will meet again."

Meanwhile, Mourinho has hailed the signing of Torres's compatriot Cesc Fabregas, with the former Arsenal and Barcelona midfielder proving to be one of the players to watch this season after three Premier League games.

"I'm not surprised. He doesn't need adaptation. He has played in the Premier League [for] many years and we can say he has formed here," Mourinho said,

"When he decided to come to Chelsea, he was very happy. It happens when a player is happy, has no pressure and enjoys the confidence of the coach."