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- 'El Niño' Is At Anfield
- Me, Myself, and I
- Fernando José Torres Sanz (born March 20, 1984) is a Spanish football player currently playing for Liverpool. He was born in Fuenlabrada, a large suburban town south of Madrid and was the youngest player to play for Atlético Madrid and the youngest to become captain (at age 19).His nickname, 'El Niño' (The Kid) refers to his youthful appearance.
Torres scored 75 goals over 5 seasons in the Spanish top flight, with only Samuel Eto'o and David Villa scoring more in the same period. Torres also played two seasons in the second division where he scored 7 goals in 40 games.
Fernando Torres became Liverpool's record signing on July 4, 2007.
The striker had spent the previous 12 years at Atletico Madrid, the club he supported as a boy.
The Spanish giants snapped him up at the age of 11 after he netted 55 goals in his first season at amateur side Rayo 13.
Three years after his arrival Torres was named the best under-14 player in Europe following his performances in the Nike Cup.
He signed his first professional contract in 1999 but had to wait until May 27, 2001 to make his debut against Leganes.
Still, at 17 years and 68 days, he was Atletico's youngest ever player. Within a week he'd scored his first goal in a match against Albacete.
The 2001-02 season saw him net six times in 36 league appearances, helping his side win promotion to La Liga.
Meanwhile, he was still making waves on the international scene. Torres was top scorer and player of the tournament in the 2001 European Under-16 Championships and 2002 European Under-19 Championships, both of which Spain won.
The frontman bagged 13 goals during his first season in the Spanish top flight, earning him a first under-21 cap for his country.
The 2003-04 campaign proved to be a momentous one for Torres. Not only did he score 19 goals in 35 league appearances, but he was also handed the club captaincy. At 19, he was the youngest skipper in Atletico's long and illustrious history.
On top of all this, the youngster was also called up into the senior Spain squad, making his full debut in a friendly with Portugal on September 6, 2003. The following April he scored his first international goal against Italy. He was then part of the Spain squad which travelled to Euro 2004 in Holland and Belgium.
The player nicknamed El Nino (The Kid) because of his youthful appearance was selected for the 2006 World Cup in Germany, where he scored three goals.
The following year, in May 2007, Torres hit the headlines when he revealed the phrase 'You'll Never Walk Alone' on the inside of his captain's armband during a match between Atletico and Real Sociedad. Two months of speculation and paper talk ensued before the striker was finally unveiled at Melwood.
He left Atletico with a record of 82 goals in 214 league appearances.
Torres made his competitive debut for the Reds at Villa Park on August 11, 2007. A week later he bagged his first official goal when Chelsea visited Anfield (though he had already scored in a pre-season friendly versus Shanghai Shenhua).
The centre-forward's apparently seamless transition into English football was highlighted with a spectacular hat-trick when Liverpool travelled to Reading in the third round of the Carling Cup.
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