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On This Day in 2008: Fernando Torres completes back-to-back Anfield hat-tricks

Jack Balmer, who played for Liverpool from 1935 to 1952, was the previous player to achieve the feat.

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Fernando Torres scored 81 goals in 142 appearances for Liverpool (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

Fernando Torres scored 81 goals in 142 appearances for Liverpool (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

Fernando Torres scored 81 goals in 142 appearances for Liverpool (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

Fernando Torres became the first Liverpool player in 62 years to score hat-tricks in consecutive games at Anfield on this day in 2008.

The Spain striker bagged a treble as Rafael Benitez’s Reds thrashed West Ham 4-0 in the Premier League, just 11 days after firing his side to a 3-2 success over Middlesbrough.

Jack Balmer was the previous Liverpool player to achieve the feat, scoring a remarkable three successive hat-tricks in November 1946, two of which came on Merseyside.

“I only learned of the record after the game and it is a big honour for me,” said Torres, who scored 81 goals in 142 appearances for the Reds.

“This club has a wonderful history so to be a part of that is very special and it is something I am very proud of.”

Torres, who arrived from Atletico Madrid the previous summer, was declared fit to face the Hammers, despite missing training with a stomach bug.

Then aged 23, he swept Liverpool ahead inside eight minutes before heading past West Ham goalkeeper Rob Green to double the advantage on the hour mark, with both assists provided by Dirk Kuyt.

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Fernando Torres celebrates his hat-trick with John Arne Riise and Yossi Benayoun (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

Fernando Torres celebrates his hat-trick with John Arne Riise and Yossi Benayoun (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

Fernando Torres celebrates his hat-trick with John Arne Riise and Yossi Benayoun (Anna Gowthorpe/PA)

With Benitez preparing to bring on Peter Crouch in his place, Torres wriggled clear to claim the match ball with a low finish in front of the Kop nine minutes from time, before captain Steven Gerrard completed the scoring with a trademark thump from distance.

Torres finished the season with 33 club goals in all competitions and went on to score Spain’s winner in their 1-0 victory over Germany in the Euro 2008 final.

Having lifted the World Cup in 2010, he left the Reds to join Premier League rivals Chelsea for a reported £50million the following January.

He won the FA Cup, Champions League and Europa League during his time at Stamford Bridge – as well as Euro 2012 with his country – and finished his career with Japanese side Sagan Tosu in 2019 after a brief spell with AC Milan and a return to boyhood club Atletico.

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