Atletico Madrid's Torres stable after being knocked unconscious

Indo Asian News Service

La Coruna (Spain), March 3 (IANS) Doctors at a hospital said that Atletico Madrid forward Fernando Torres was "conscious and oriented" after being knocked out during La Liga match here against Deportivo.

Torres on Thursday was carried off the pitch on a stretcher in the 84th minute of the match at the Riazor, which ended 1-1, reports Efe.

He lost consciousness for several minutes after colliding with Deportivo's Alex Bergantiños while going up for a header.

Visibly stunned, players from both teams watched anxiously as Torres lay on the ground before being taken to a waiting ambulance.

Torres regained consciousness en route to the hospital and CAT scans found no sign of "traumatic injuries", but the player will be kept overnight for observation, which is the standard protocol in these cases.

Atletico dominated in the opening minutes of the match and both Antoine Griezmann and Kevin Gameiro had chances.

Even so, it was Deportivo who scored first, exploiting a mix-up between Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak and defender Jose Gimenez that resulted in an unstoppable strike from short range by Florin Andone.

With a 1-0 lead in the 13th minute, Deportivo sought to press the advantage and nearly got a second goal.

Home goalkeeper German Lux had to make a save against Atletico's Angel Correa, while Deportivo's Celso Borges sent a header over the crossbar and Oblak turned aside a volley from Pedro Mosquera.

Still trailing on the approach to the hour mark, Atletico coach Diego Simeone turned to his bench, deploying Nicolas Gaitan and Yannick Carrasco in the 57th minute.

Ten minutes later, he used his last substitution, replacing Gameiro with Torres.

The equaliser finally came in the 68th minute, when Griezmann surprised Lux with a shot from distance just seconds after Felipe Luis hit the woodwork.

Both teams upped the tempo and both got chances. Andone coming close for the hosts and Torres threatening at the Deportivo end.

Bergantinos entered for Deportivo in the 75th minute and the collision that sent Torres to the hospital came shortly after El Niño forced a save from Lux.

The draw left Atletico in fourth place with 46 points from 25 matches, nine fewer than third-place Sevilla and just one more than Real Sociedad.

Deportivo, with 20 points from 24 matches, sit in 17th place, just a point above the drop zone.

--IANS

gau/vt