Newcastle United boss, Rafael Benitez is rumoured to be interested in reuniting with Fernando Torres at the St James’ Park and plan on offering a contract to the free agent. The 34-year-old veteran just played his last game for Atletico Madrid, scoring two goals in the match and ending a fairytale career with his boyhood club. However, he is not ready to hang up his boots just yet and the Magpies could sign him for nothing.
Torres enjoyed his best days under the present Newcastle boss when both of them were at Liverpool. Both became massive figures in the Premier League at the time with Benitez winning the UEFA Champions League in 2005 and Torres being named in the six-man shortlist for the 2008 PFA Player Of The Season award.
Torres was at his prolific best in his debut season at Anfield, scoring 24 in the league and eclipsing Ruud Van Nistelrooy’s record. He also was nominated for the Balon d’Or that season and came in third behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.
An unfortunate injury crisis curbed his mercurial form in Europe’s top flight and the Spaniard slowly faded from his decorated podium to becoming just another one of ‘could-have-been’ players. He helped Chelsea win the UEFA Champions League 2011/12 season by scoring the winning goal against Barcelona in the second Leg of the Semi Final tie.
He is adored by the fans at Wanda Metropolitano, having played 9 seasons with the club and registering 346 appearances with the side. Diego Simeone could not help but choose younger and abler options like Diego Costa, Antoine Griezmann and Kevin Gameiro ahead of the Spaniard.
Torres has still managed to chip in with a few goals from his substitute appearances this season with 7 goals and 2 assists. At 34, he might be a veteran of the game but still has the legs to carry a team’s offence.
His poacher like instincts and his goal-scoring experience can come in handy for Newcastle United. They have marked their return to the Premier League with a brilliant 10th place finish this campaign.
Rafael Benitez has delivered a masterstroke with the limited resources he had at his disposal. However, things did not always look as pleasing as it has in the latter stage of the season. United were locked in the midst of a gruesome relegation battle with their leading number nine, Dwight Gayle struggling to find the back of the net.
Benitez was forced to find secondary options in Leicester City’s Islam Slimani who also struck out at Tyneside with injuries and behavioural issues.
Maybe getting Torres will help Benitez strengthen the other leaks in the team while also having a strong arm in the offence for the succeeding campaign.
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