Atletico Madrid played a 1-1 draw at Deportivo la Coruna on Thursday but the main talking point was the ‘traumatic brain injury’ suffered by striker Fernando Torres after he was knocked unconscious in the dying stages of the game.
Torres, 32, was hit from behind by Deportivo’s Alex Bergantinos in a clash of heads in the 85th minute and hit the ground hard as he appeared to have already lost consciousness.
The former Liverpool and Chelsea attacker was left stricken on the turf as teammates and medical staff attended to him, with coach Diego Simeone having insisted he “heard a crack” from the dugout area, Goal
Stricken Torres stretchered off at the Riazor
“Fernando Torres has a traumatic brain injury and has been transferred to hospital for tests,” Atletico said in a statement.
“Our player, who is stable, suffered a heavy blow to the head in the final stages of the match and had to be taken quickly to hospital by ambulance.
“The striker will spend the night under observation.”
Distressed Atletico defender Jose Maria Gimenez was seen crying, while Deportivo fans gave the former Spanish international a standing ovation as he was carried from the field.
“We are all scared,” Atletico left-back Filipe Luis told BeIN Sports.
“The news we have received until now is good. The most important thing is that Fernando is ok.”
Torres’ former teammates at Chelsea and Liverpool have taken to social media to express their condolences.
Atletico had to see out seven minutes of stoppage time with 10 men as they had already made all three substitutions.
Pepe Mel made the perfect start on his debut as Deportivo coach when Florin Andone capitalised on a poor goal kick from Jan Oblak to slot home, but Atleti equalised in stunning fashion 22 minutes from time when Antoine Griezmann blasted home from 30 yards