Take your game to the next level: Fernando Torres on finishing and penalties
Monday, 6 March 2023
A UEFA Champions League-winner with Chelsea in 2011/12, striker Fernando Torres is bringing big-game skills to the futsal pitch in this video, presented by Gatorade.
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Having scored over 300 goals for clubs and country between 2000 and 2019, Fernando Torres was one of the top strikers of his age, and the former Atlético, Liverpool, Chelsea and Spain forward is showing how to translate his top-level skills to the futsal pitch.
A UEFA Champions League winner with Chelsea in 2011/12, Torres won two EUROs and a FIFA World Cup with Spain between 2008 and 2012, and shares one of his finishing tricks in this video, presented by Gatorade. The key, he says, is to defy expectations.
"We always look to get onto our favoured foot and aim for the space at the far post," Torres explains, but he is keen to demonstrate that there is a less well-signposted route to the back of the net. "If you shoot through the defender's legs to the near post, it's a guaranteed goal. The trick is to find the right moment.
"As the defender is looking to intercept the ball he'll stretch his left leg and your shot has to be low, firm and go through his legs," he adds. "The important thing about this play is that while you dribble your last touch needs to be soft, so the defender stretches for the ball and you pivot on your standing leg. When you get the ball out wide, your first touch should be towards the defender to get him on the back foot: that's when you go inside and force the defender to follow you."
As well as demonstrating the art of finishing, Torres is eager to share his single-step penalty technique with futsal players. "The most important thing is being clear about where you will shoot," he says. "Another important thing is to always look at the goalkeeper. He will normally look at the ball but the longer you take to shoot he will look at you. That's when you must shoot because he's not looking at the ball."
It is easier said than done, of course. Torres practised penalties against some of the best goalkeepers of his age – Petr Čech, Jan Oblak, Iker Casillas, Víctor Valdés – but converting in a match situation is a different matter. "During training, you almost never miss a penalty, but in a game there is fatigue, the time and the importance of the match, so it's very important to know the goalkeeper."
For Torres' money, Čech was the best penalty-saver of the lot, the Czech No1 having demonstrated his skills with three saves (one in extra time and two more in the shoot-out) as Chelsea beat Bayern in the 2012 UEFA Champions League final. "We won the Champions League thanks to a great goalkeeper who was a great penalty-saver," Torres says.
Watch the video to take your game to the next level with Fernando Torres