Fernando José Torres Sanz (Spanish pronunciation: [ferˈnando ˈtores]; born 20 March 1984), nicknamed El Niño (The Kid in Spanish), is a Spanish footballer who plays as a striker for Chelsea and the Spain national team. Torres started his career with Atlético Madrid, progressing through their youth system to the first team squad. He made his first team debut in 2001 and finished his time at the club having scored 75 goals in 174 La Liga appearances. Prior to his La Liga debut, Torres played two seasons in the Segunda División for Atlético Madrid, making 40 appearances and scoring seven goals.
He joined Premier League club Liverpool in 2007, after signing for a club record transfer fee. He marked his first season at Anfield by being Liverpool's first player since Robbie Fowler in the 1995–96 season to score more than 20 league goals in a season. Torres became the fastest player in Liverpool history to score 50 league goals. He left the club in January 2011 to join Chelsea for a record British transfer fee of £50 million, which made him the most expensive Spanish player in history. In his first full season at Chelsea, Torres was integral in the club winning the FA Cup and the UEFA Champions League, despite receiving criticism for a comparatively low goal-scoring record. The following season he scored in the final of the 2012-13 UEFA Europa League, helping Chelsea to win the competition for the first time.
Torres is a Spanish international and made his debut against Portugal in 2003. He has since participated in five major tournaments; UEFA Euro 2004, the 2006 FIFA World Cup, UEFA Euro 2008, the 2010 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2012. Torres did not score at Euro 2004, but netted three at the 2006 World Cup. He scored twice at UEFA Euro 2008, including the winning goal for Spain in their 1–0 win over Germany in the final. He went on to win the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012 with Spain, scoring no goals in the former, and scoring three goals in the latter to win the Golden Boot, as part of the historic Spain side which won three consecutive major tournaments.
Born in Fuenlabrada, Community of Madrid, Torres became interested in football as a child and joined his first team, Parque 84, at the age of five. His father José Torres worked during Torres' childhood, and his mother Flori Sanz travelled daily with him to training sessions. His grandfather was not a passionate football fan, but took pride in being an Atlético Madrid supporter, and Torres inherited his love for the club.