The Rise And Fall Of The Great Fernando Torres
There was a time when Fernando Torres was considered as one of the best strikers in the world. Whenever he played it felt like he would never fail to score capturing the hearts of fans worldwide. But all of a sudden just like that it seemed like he lost everything. Here we take a look at the rise and fall of the great Fernando Torres who was technically but lost his grace.
Torres would begin his football journey in Atletico madrid’s youth program. Believe it or not Torres actually started off his football career as a goalkeeper. But, after his touch and control was noticed his coach said it would be a waste of his talents to rot away at the goal post.
Since, they didn’t know his name they started calling him “El nino” which in spanish means “The kid”. As a young prodigy for the club, Torres would make his official debut for the men’s team in 2002 scoring a respectable 20 goals in 35 appearances.
That season Torres would be La Liga’s third highest scorer and would be named Atletico Madrid’s captain only at the age of 19 which is honestly pretty insane.
Becoming a captain only at his teenage years even though there were so many senior players on the squad was pretty much unheard of. He was the kid captain learning from the older players so the nickname El nino just stuck with him.
After the season, Chelsea owner and billionaire Roman Abramovich made a €28 million bid for the young striker but was immediately shot down by Atletico’s board of directors.
This just gives you a little glimpse of the hype that was surrounding El nino just after his very first La Liga season. The following season Torres would have a taste at his very first European competition The “UEFA Cup”. Torres would help his team reach the finals scoring 3 goals in 5 appearances but as luck would have it,they would lose the final in a 3-1 penalty shoot out against fellow La Liga rivals Villarreal.
In 2007, teams from the Premier league began making moves to try and sign the Spanish striker. With Liverpool and Chelsea nearly going all out in order to try and acquire him.
In the end Liverpool gave Atletico Madrid an offer that was too good to refuse. A €25 million transfer fee and a deal between Villarreal to send Diego Forlan to Atletico in exchange for Luis Garcia and with that deal Fernando Torres would be headed to Anfield.
This move seemed to be perfect for Liverpool as just on his debut Torres would score his first premier league goal giving the home fans a taste of what was to come. Just a month later, Fernando Torres would score his very first hat-trick in the premier league against Reading.
Torres would continue his scoring and amaze everyone. Winning him his first premier league player of the month award after scoring 4 goals in 4 consecutive appearances.
Torres would also eclipsed Ruud Van Nistelrooy’s record for most debut premier league goals scored in a single season from a foreign player and finish second to Emmanuel Adebayor in the race for the premier league golden boot.
In his first season with Liverpool, Torres would score 33 goals in 46 appearances making him the most goals scored by a player in a single season for the club passing Michael owen’s previous record of 29 goals. This amazing season would also land Torres in the short list for PFA player of the year award which was won by Cristiano Ronaldo.
He would also finish second in the PFA young player of the year award which was won by fellow spaniard Cesc Fabregas. Again,Chelsea attempted to sign Torres but this time it was for a fee of 50 million pounds.But, Liverpool co-owner Tom Hanks denied it saying he would not allow him to leave the club for any price.
The very next season Torres would be named into his first Fifa World XI, finished third place behind Ronaldo and Messi in the Fifa World player of the year award and be named into his second consecutive PFA team of the year. Another interesting fact is that just on his second season with the club Torres was named into Liverpool’s 50 greatest all time players.
In 2010, it would be Torres’ last season in perfect health. He would score 22 goals in 33 appearances becoming the fastest Liverpool player to ever score 50 goals. Being selected into his second Fifa World XI squad and finishing as Liverpool’s top scorer again before he had to undergo knee surgery after an injury he received against Benfica that would end his season early.
Every injury affects a player’s form and speed and this is exactly what happened to Fernando Torres especially because he didn’t give it proper time to heal when he went to play in the World Cup instead of focusing on rehabilitation.
Ever since his surgery Torres never really got back to his legendary form for Liverpool. The next season Torres would have his worst performance for the club scoring 9 goals in 22 appearances which isn’t terrible at all but it seemed like Torres was a ghost of his former self.
This time Chelsea would finally get to have the player that they’ve been trying to sign for years. In 2011, Torres would move to Stamford bridge for a fee of 50 million pounds which back then was considered a ton of money. Although, the problem was the Torres they got wasn’t exactly the one they have been wanting to get for all those years.
In his first season with Chelsea ,Torres was very disappointing only scoring once in 18 appearances which finally ended a 903 minute try streak of being unable to score a goal. Chelsea fans made it very clear that they were disappointed in Torres and regret having sign him.
But little did they know that in the next season Torres would make them eat their words. In 2012, Torres would only score 11 goals in 49 appearances which was very underwhelming again but everyone would forget about his poor form when it came to one of the most magical moments in his career under the brightest lights of the Champions League.
In the Champions League semi-final against Barcelona Torres would substitute in for Didier Drogba in the last nine minutes hoping for a miracle to happen. Barcelona was only a few minutes away from beating Chelsea in advancing to the final.
But, in stoppage time Fernando Torres somehow manages to break free from every Barcelona defender and just pass through Victor Valdes with ease scoring one of the most iconic goals in Champions League history.
So, with that Chelsea would move on to the final and eventually win their first ever Champions League title. Unfortunately, the 2012-13 season would be the last time we would really see any good form from Torres.
During the 2012 Euros in Poland and in Ukraine,Torres would win the golden boot for the tournament scoring 4 goals in total and again helping his home country Spain win their second European championship.
After that season we would never really see Torres have the same goal scoring output as he once did. As you can see he’s never scored over 20 goals in a single season again. After leaving Chelsea, Torres would hop around being to different teams like AC Milan and even his former club Atletico.
Until they officially resigned him for a couple of years in 2016 and to be fair Torres was still getting some decent goal scoring production during those years after Chelsea. It just wasn’t nearly as impressive as he used to do.
And it’s weird to see comments about Torres on some videos and people seemed to think he’s retired. But, he’s actually playing for Sagan Tosu in the Japanese League along with fellow spaniard Andres Iniesta.
So,he still has some miles left on his legs. So far, for Sagan Tosu Fernando Torres has scored a total of 2 goals within 12 appearances. So, hopefully we can still see some of that in Fernando Torres in Japan because watching him in his prime was an absolute pleasure as he was one of the favourite players growing up just because of how good yet humble he was. In his prime he is one of the most lethal striker the the beautiful game has ever seen.