It took Colombian striker Radamel Falcao three official matches to accomplish what it took Sergio Agüero 234 official games to achieve: a hat-trick with Atlético.
The forward, described by coach Gregorio Manzano as a “scorer and skilled opportunist”, looks to be the product advertised with his €40 million price tag and is quickly banishing memories of that Argentine fellow.
Along with his attacking counterparts Diego, Arda Turan and Reyes, Falcao was dynamite against a depleted Racing side on Sunday.
The Colombia international was given the match ball, which, according to Atlético’s official site, was signed by all his team-mates.
After the 4-0 victory on Sunday, Falcao was surrounded by reporters wanting to hear his impressions of his big game.
“I’m happy to be able to score three goals,” he was quoted as saying by the club’s official site.
“I thank God for what I’m living and I thank my team-mates because without them this would not be possible.”
The 25-year-old has won over the hearts of the Rojiblanco faithful and a throbbing Vicente Calderón chanted his name during the clash.
“The fans were great with all players,” said Falcao.
“Clearly, there is interaction between the players and the fans.”
‘El Tigre’ was asked if he had seen the Twitter-style ‘hashtag’ displayed on the stadium’s monitors while the match was being played, which read ‘#untigreandasuelto’ (‘A tiger is on the loose’).
“No, because I was concentrating on the game, but I’ve been told,” he said.
“Hopefully I can work with the team and score goals but more importantly, the team win. The team goals are more important than personal ones.”
Falcao will look to add to his goal total on Wednesday, when Atleti host Sporting Gijón.
“We’re only thinking about the match against Sporting, where we will try to win all three points,” he said.
“The most important thing for us now is Wednesday and we will focus specifically on that game.”