Fernando José Torres Sanz was born in Fuenlabrada, on the outskirts of the Spanish capital, Madrid. The Spanish striker is one of Spain’s greatest ever players, but he had a career of many unimaginable highs, and some drastic lows. Fernando Torres, or as his name translates in English ‘Ferdinand Towers’, won the hearts of many football fans across his playing days, in particular his boyhood club Atletico Madrid, and his spells at English clubs Liverpool and Chelsea.
Fernando Torres possessed unmatchable pace, trickery, desire, power, finesse on the ball, and he was unplayable when on song. He had the ability to finish using either foot, his head, whether it was from 10 yards out, or outside the area. He scored past the toughest defences in tight encounters, and he wasn’t shy about bullying lesser teams by putting them to the sword.
Fernando Torres was considered one of the best strikers in the world at times but he was unable to sustain that for his whole professional career. He had many times where he was injured, unfit, lacked confidence, unsettled, and just sometimes out of favour for his manager. There appears to be a correlation between the success of Fernando Torres, and the attire on his head.
Undoubtedly, the best years for Fernando Torres spanned from 2006 to 2009, in his early 20’s. A young lad at Atletico Madrid blossomed from rising potential into world class, as he had a record of scoring 1 in every 3 matches in 200+ appearances. During this time, he was always a regular in the Spanish national team, and played his part in the World Cup back in 2006. He scored three goals in four matches on the world’s biggest stage, as Spain had an early exit. Following the 2006/2007 season, he became Liverpool’s most expensive ever signing, and he quickly converted into a fan-favourite of the Kop. Torres scored 23 Premier League goals, the most prolific foreign goal scoring record in a debut season in England at the time. In the summer of 2008, Spain went on to win the European Championships, as Fernando Torres scored two goals, including the winner in the final, as he showed a prodigious burst of pace, and exquisite finishing ability to see off the Germans. Viva España.
Throughout his golden era, there was one common denominator of his appearance. His headband. With luscious blonde locks, or sometimes brunette, his long hair was held back using a headband, and his best moments in football we’d see him showcasing this gear. Coincidence? Throughout his later years at Atletico Madrid, and his first two seasons for Liverpool, he utilised the headband. Not only that, but in Spain’s European Championship win in 2008, he always wore it. A haircut, which resulted him headband-less in 2010 was the worst thing to happen to him. His form dipped, the goals were drying out, and he tried to recapture his career at Chelsea, but it took him 14 matches to get his first goal. He didn’t make an impact as Spain won the World Cup, and he looked a shadow of his former self.
To add further evidence of the headband’s luck, he began to grow his hair again in 2012, as Chelsea went on to win the Champions League, and he scored the infamous goal against Barcelona in the semi-final to take them through. Did he wear the headband that night? You know the answer. Headbands followed Fernando Torres in his highest moments, but they were nowhere to be seen when Torres was injured, out of form, and out of favour, which happened post-Liverpool. Torres still plays today in Japan, but as his career draws to a close there will be many onlookers thinking ‘what could have been?’ had he kept…the headband.