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Atletico ready to make move for former forward Fernando Torres

Fernando Torres may be given a direct route out of his Serie A nightmare by boyhood club Atletico Madrid, after their president hinted that the Spanish giants could offer the striker a deal.

The former Spain international is currently at AC Milan as part of a two-year loan spell, after his parent club Chelsea (odds-on 4/9 with Coral to win the title) ran out of patience in the Spaniard’s under-par performances in front of goal.

Torres is still yet to rediscover the form that made him one of the most feared strikers in Europe before moving to London, but Atletico president Enrique Cerezo has refused to rule out the possibility of re-signing the 30-year-old, who left the La Liga club for Liverpool in 2007.

“He is not here but that does not mean that he won’t be,” Cerezo said.

“We have until the final moments of the January transfer window to sign players.”

Since departing Spain, Torres has gone from setting the Premier League alight in the Red of Liverpool, to faltering helplessly in front of goal with both Chelsea and AC Milan.

The World Cup-winning centre forward signed for the Blues for a record £50m in 2011, making him the most expensive Spanish player in history. Torres left the Merseyside outfit, where he bagged 65 goals in 102 appearances on his way to becoming a huge favourite among the Kop faithful.

Atletico manager, Diego Simeone, who was captained by Torres when both played for Atleti, could seek a January move for the Rossoneri forward.

“There is no Torres deal, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not going to happen,” he said. “We have a great team with all positions well covered.

“Until the transfer window is closed there is always the possibility of bringing a player in. We’re going to do our best in competing for all three trophies this season.”

Atletico head into the winter break four points behind fierce rivals Real Madrid in La Liga, and could use a rejuvenated Torres in their ranks for the long road to regaining their title. Their former skipper is among a host of world class strikers to have played for Atleti, including Sergio Aguero, David Villa, Radamel Falcao and the man who replaced Torres in London, Diego Costa.

Despite now being a shadow of his former sensational self, the Serie A struggler was a hero at the Vicente Calderon Stadium, progressing through their youth system to the first team. While making a name for himself at Atleti, terrific Torres tore through defences at a young age, netting an impressive 82 goals in 214 outings for his childhood club.

Torres ranks highly among the other former scoring heroes of Atletico, but it’s current Manchester United striker, Falcao, who holds the record for most in a season for the Spanish club, and Manchester City forward, Aguero, netted more times than Torres. However, the Argentine did play 20 games more than the Spaniard, replacing the former Premier League star when his move to Liverpool was finalised.

Torres no longer features in Milan coach Filippo Inzaghi’s plans, and reports in Italy indicate that Milan have been sounding out potential takers for some weeks. Having spent more time on the bench than on the pitch recently, the Spaniard is now thought to be ready to depart, and a return to his boyhood club Atletico seems the most likely destination, where he could finish his career where it all began.