Fernando Torres was rushed to hospital following a horrific head injury during Atletico Madrid’s draw with Deportivo la Coruna.
Video footage showed Torres’ head bounced off the turf in horrifying fashion before anxious team-mates ran towards him to help.
Team-mates Gabi and Sime Vrsaljko even had to reach inside the player’s mouth to grab to stop the striker swallowing his tongue, with Deportivo’s club doctor Carlos Larino later praising the pair’s “perfect” reaction.
Torres then left the field on a stretcher wearing a neck brace, after several minutes of treatment. He was rushed to a local hospital, with what Atletico Madrid described in a Tweet as a ‘brain trauma injury’.
But after undergoing cranial and cervical CT scans, Torres received the all-clear but advised to observe protocol by spending the night in the hospital.
The 32-year-old Atletico striker was later able to Tweet: “Many thanks to all concerned for me and for your messages of encouragement.
“It was just a scare. I hope to return very soon!.
Torres’ manager and team-mates were left shocked as the incident was quite reminiscent of the clash which led to Hull midfielder Ryan Mason breaking his skull.
Immediately after the match, Diego Simeone revealed: “Torres is conscious, he has a head trauma. We are worried and very nervous after the scare.”
He later added: “We expect the best for Fernando Torres.”
Fellow Rojiblancos striker Antoine Griezmann added: “I don’t really care now about football or the result, only worried about Fernando’s health at moment. Hope he’s okay and back soon.”
Speaking about his fears when Torres was first knocked unconscious, Felipe Luis added: “It was something very scary for us all. But news we’ve received so far is positive, most important is Fernando recovers okay.”