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On this day in 2007: Fernando Torres signs for Liverpool

Fernando Torres signed for Liverpool in 2007 (Peter Byrne/PA)
Fernando Torres signed for Liverpool in 2007 (Peter Byrne/PA)

Liverpool broke their transfer record to sign Spain striker Fernando Torres from Atletico Madrid on this day in 2007.

Torres cost Liverpool a fee of £26.5 million and was bought following the club’s Champions League final defeat to AC Milan by manager Rafael Benitez.

He had spent 12 years with hometown club Atletico, where he became the youngest player in club history, making his debut in May 2001 at the age of 17.

Internationally, Torres’ medal collection includes a World Cup and two European Championships. He made over 100 appearances for Spain and he scored the winning goal in the Euro 2008 final.

At Anfield

Liverpool’s Fernando Torres and captain Steven Gerrard had a strong partnership
Liverpool’s Fernando Torres and captain Steven Gerrard had a strong partnership (Peter Byrne/PA)

Torres went on to win the hearts of Liverpool supporters, scoring 81 times in 142 appearances during his four years at the club.

Despite Torres’ form in front of goal, his time at Anfield was a trophy-less one, a narrow second-placed Premier League finish to rivals Manchester United was the closest they came to silverware during his time on Merseyside.

In 2008-09, the Reds lost just twice in the Premier League, but 11 draws would prove to be their undoing, finishing just four points behind table-topping United, with 86 points.

Leaving Merseyside

Torres left Anfield for Premier League rivals Chelsea in January 2011
Torres left Anfield for Premier League rivals Chelsea in January 2011 (Chris Ison/PA)

Torres sealed a £50 million move from Liverpool to Premier League rivals Chelsea in 2011, breaking up a prolific partnership with then Reds captain Steven Gerrard.

It was a tumultuous time then at Anfield, Benitez had left the club, and the owners were looking to sell when he left for London.

Torres’ move south did not bring with it the same impact as his spell at Liverpool.

The Spaniard found the net just 45 times in 172 matches, although he left with FA Cup, Champions League and Europa League winners’ medals.

Move away from England

After Chelsea, Torres returned to Atletico, also spending time at AC Milan and in Japan
After Chelsea, Torres moved to AC Milan before returning to Atletico and finishing in Japan (Adam Davy/PA)

Torres moved to AC Milan on a two-year loan in August 2014 before making the move permanent in January, but shortly after he returned to Atletico on loan until the end of the 2015-16 season.

Torres signed a permanent deal with Atletico in July 2016 and would stay there for a further two seasons before he ended his career with Sagan Tosu in Japan.