Five-goal Falcao hails unforgettable La Liga night

MADRID Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:54am IST

Atletico Madrid's Radamel Falcao celebrates his goal against Deportivo La Coruna during their Spanish first division soccer match at Vicente Calderon stadium in Madrid December 9, 2012. REUTERS/Susana Vera

Atletico Madrid's Radamel Falcao celebrates his goal against Deportivo La Coruna during their Spanish first division soccer match at Vicente Calderon stadium in Madrid December 9, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Susana Vera

MADRID (Reuters) - Radamel Falcao hailed an "unforgettable night" after the coveted Atletico Madrid striker hit five goals past Deportivo Coruna to become the first man to achieve the feat in Spain's top league in more than a decade.

Fernando Morientes was the last player to score five in a match playing for Real Madrid against Las Palmas in February 2002 and Falcao was the first to do so for Atletico as they thrashed Depor 6-0 to stay in second place, six points behind leaders Barcelona.

"I scored five in a game when I was little in Bogota," the Colombian known as "the tiger" said on Atletico's website (www.clubatleticodemadrid.com).

"And I got four playing for Porto against Villarreal but never five as a professional," he added.

"I was very excited when I came to Atletico Madrid. It was a personal challenge to play in this great league with such a lot of good players

"I am enjoying it. I have a great squad around me who are supporting me and helping me a great deal to develop as a professional."

Falcao took his tally in La Liga this season to 16 in 15 matches, three more than Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo and seven behind top scorer Lionel Messi of Barcelona.

However, his exploits are certain to raise expectations that one of Europe's richest clubs will attempt to lure him away.

The 26-year-old has been linked with big spenders like Paris St Germain, Chelsea and Manchester City and even with Atletico's arch rivals and city neighbours Real.

Atletico coach Diego Simeone said the club were savouring Falcao's presence in the side.

"His people love him, his team mates respect him a great deal and they follow his lead on the pitch," Argentine Simeone, a former Atletico player who has revived the club's fortunes since taking over in December 2011, told a news conference.

"Today is an historic day for him," he added.

"I don't know if any other Atletico player will score five goals in a match. I hope that's the case.

"Falcao represents ambition, excitement, always wanting more. When the game allows and he has his chances he really is very difficult to mark." (Reporting by Iain Rogers, editing by Ken Ferris)

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Top Athletes

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Abu Dhabi GP

Abu Dhabi GP

Hamilton ready to stand and deliver  Full Article 

Suzuki Cup

Suzuki Cup

Singapore confident of Suzuki title, matchfixing worry lurks  Full Article 

Culture Shock

Culture Shock

Late kickoffs a culture shock for new Sociedad boss Moyes.  Full Article 

Davis Cup

Davis Cup

Gael-force Monfils blows France back into final.  Full Article | Related Story 

Hamilton Ahead

Hamilton Ahead

Advantage Hamilton in Abu Dhabi practice  Full Article 

Racist Comment

Racist Comment

FA investigating Wigan owner Whelan's remarks   Full Article 

Hall of Fame

Hall of Fame

Kewell, Hong, Daei among AFC's first Hall of Fame inductees  Full Article 

Relief For Zidane

Relief For Zidane

Zidane coaching ban overturned  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device  Full Coverage