What David Villa’s Signing Could Mean For NYCFCThe signing of one of football’s all-time greatest forwards would be a massive coup for NYCFC and Major League Soccer
by Nick Chavez | Thursday, May 29, 2014
One World Cup, 1 Euro Cup, 1 UEFA Champion’s League Cup, 3 Copas Del Rey, 3 La Liga Titles, 1 FIFA Club World Cup, with many other more minor club trophies and individual honors that he has earned throughout his illustrious career.
That is the résumé of David “El Guaje” Villa, the Spanish National Team’s all-time leading scorer.
Spanish radio station, Cadena COPE’s “El Partido de las 12” is reporting that Villa will be coming to MLS and New York City FC, claiming that Villa was planning on continuing to compete in Europe until he received a salary offer from NYCFC that was “so enormous” that he has decided to join the MLS expansion side.
“El Partido de las 12” also mentioned in the same report that the agreement that has already been reached between the Club and “El Guaje” is for 3 seasons, and that NYCFC will also speak with new FC Barcelona manager Luis Enrique after this year’s World Cup to negotiate the transfer of Xavi Hernandez, which has been predicted in the past, even when reports began to indicate that Xavi wasn’t coming.
If New York City FC were to sign the reigning La Liga Champion and recent Champion’s League Final runner-up with Atlético Madrid, as rumors suggest, it would be a massive coup for both NYCFC and Major League Soccer.
Of course, it all still remains to be seen if these alleged reports will come to fruition, but there is some reason to believe that they will considering FC Barcelona connection of City Football Group’s management (i.e. Ferran Soriano and Txiki Begiristain), the relationship and familiarity they have with these players when they were both Barcelona players and the trust that engenders, as well as the resources they wield to coerce players with globally-competitive salaries to ply their trades in New York City proper.
And although “El Guaje” (“The Kid” in the Asturian dialect of Spanish) isn’t a kid anymore, he is still at a relatively-young age to start MLS, as he will have just turned 33 years old by the time New York City FC makes its competitive debut in March 2015.
The signing of David Villa, already a living legend in Spanish football, and one of the greatest forwards of all-time period, would be a powerful signal of intent and ambition from New York City FC, who will be looking to immediately capture the imagination and affection of the notoriously hard-to-please New York City sports market.
In Villa, New York City FC can count on a clinical, merciless, big-game forward who has the unquestionable ability to terrorize MLS back-lines. And if “The City Way” is really modeled after “The Barca Way” as it appears to be, Villa is already well-versed in this style from his considerable time with FC Barcelona and “La Furia Roja.” Therefore, one would expect him to adjust seamlessly if Head Coach Jason Kreis is able to successfully channel this philosophy with his soon-to-be-assembled NYCFC squad.
If Villa does end up becoming a New York City Blue, the club can also count on attracting a healthy percentage of the large number of La Liga fans in the NYC-metro area that have particularly come to admire the talents of “El Guaje” throughout his legendary career, while playing for club and country.
On the other hand, David Villa has had his share of injury problems throughout his career. However, they weren’t significant enough to keep him from being instrumental in winning so much silverware throughout his career and becoming Spain’s all-time leading scorer, so the risks don’t seem to outweigh the potential benefits in that regard either.
Indeed, the signing of “El Guaje”, in itself, would seem to be a major step in putting New York City Football Club on the path of being immediate MLS Cup contenders, making noise in the congested New York City sports market.
It all remains to be confirmed, but I’m sure The Third Rail and the rest of NYCFC’s growing fan-base will be hoping that “El Partido de las 12” have trustworthy inside sources.