Fernando ‘El Nino’ Torres broke the deadlock for Atletico Madrid against Valencia, and manager Diego Simeone acknowledged after the match that Torres’s speed and skill were exactly what his team needed.
Los Rojiblancos were making hard work of a tie against Valencia CF, with the sides deadlocked after Denis Cheryshev cancelled out Anton Griezmann’s opener in the 27th minute. But then their super-sub Fernando Torres made an instant impact after coming on in the 65th minute, putting Atletico ahead seven minutes later.
Torres also drew a foul from Anderlan Santos, who received his second yellow card and reduced Valencia to ten men. After the match, Atletico manager Diego Simeone heaped compliments on his veteran forward, praising his pace and awareness.
“It was unfair for [Matias] Kranevitter to go off since he was having a great game, but the match needed more firepower going forward, more speed, more of a penalty-box player like Fernando Torres,” Simeone said, according to fourfourtwo.com.
“We’re thinking day by day. Of course Fernando came on very well, [but] I’m happy with the team in general.
“The game started with [Luciano] Vietto, who did some great work. We know Fernando is different, he has speed.”
Torres’s last days at his boyhood club
El Nino has had a great 2016 for Atletico Madrid so far. Torres has scored three goals in crucial matches against Eibar, Getafe and Valencia, including his 100th goal for the club.
The Spaniard had signed his first professional contract for Atletico Madrid in 1999 and went on to spend 7 seasons with Los Rojiblancos, before moving on to Liverpool in 2007. He returned from AC Milan on an 18-month loan last season, but it looks like Atletico Madrid are not keen to sign him permanently when the current deal is over.
The 31-year-old isn’t particularly worried though, as he reportedly has offers that could make him the best paid player in the world.