Report: David Villa started the off-season preparations with Spain's national team as a member of Valencia CF. But even before Vicente del Bosque's men embarked on the plane to South Africa for the 2010 World Cup Villa joined FC Barcelona for €40 million and signed a four year contract.
Villa had a brilliant World Cup playing in all seven games scoring five goals and assisting on one. Three of the five goals he scored were game winning goals and even when Villa didn't score he was always active on the pitch. After the tournament David was awarded the Bronze Ball and the Silver Boot and was named to the all-star team.
Throughout his career Villa played as a striker but Guardiola moved him to the wing, usually on the left side but he was often found on the other flank as well. Despite the change of playing position Villa had a good start to the season. Several non-La Masia graduates have struggled in the past to get on the same page with Lionel Messi, but David didn't have the same problems. With Pedro on the other wing the MVP line looked destined to break all kinds of records.
In the end they didn't and some of that is Villa's fault. Granted Villa started the season as well as any player in the league, but as the season progressed his form dropped. To begin his Blaugrana career El Guaje proved to be the goalscoring threat he was with Valencia and Spain and he was in the early contention not only for the Zarra Trophy but also for the Pichichi.
However as time went on Villa started to miss easy chances and after every game in which he didn't score a bit of confidence disappeared. He didn't score in 15 of 17 games to end the season, a stretch that included 11 consecutive games without a tally. Even though David didn't end up on the scoresheet in those games he wasn't a liability on the pitch and he always gave his best to help the team. Despite the bad stretch Villa ended the season on high note as he scored in the most important game of the season, the Champions League final.
Moment of the season: David Villa enjoyed many good games, but his best one came on 30 October 2010 at the Camp Nou against Sevilla FC. Barcelona won the game 5-0 and the striker was a key player in the five-star performance. Villa's constant movement proved too much for the Andalusian side's defense and David made them pay with two goals. His first came in the 24th minute courtesy of a stunning strike and he also scored the last goal of the night in the final minute of the match.
09 - Barcelona - Sevilla 5-0 (30.10.2010) Highlights (via TodayFootball)
|Started on the bench||7
|Shots on goal||70
Record with David Villa in the starting lineup: 37-8-3
2011/12 Outlook: David Villa will return to Barcelona as a member of the starting eleven. Last season he didn't have to worry about loosing a starting spot because of Bojan Krkić's bad form, but with the arrival of Alexis Sanchez, Villa can't afford to go eleven games without a goal. I for one am not worried about that because Villa is a hard worker and he is still one of the best goalscorers in the world.
Next up: Pedro Rodriguez