This week New York City Football Club have signed Spanish international David Villa to a three year contract. Villa becomes the first signing made by NYCFC. The Manchester City backed club will be a new entrant to Major League Soccer, the professional soccer league here in the United States, and their season will kick off March 2015. NYCFC will be playing their home games at Yankee Stadium, and they will become the first Major League Soccer team to play their home games in New York City limits (the New York Red Bulls, like their predecessors the Metrostars, play in northern New Jersey).
Villa, who will wear his customary number 7 jersey with the club, is 32 years old and coming off a title winning season with Spanish club Atletico Madrid. He’s been on a La Liga winning team three of the last 4 years (previous 2 titles come with former club Barcelona) and he also has a Euro and World Cup title on his resume. He’ll have a chance at being part of a second World Cup winning team when Spain kicks off their defense of the title later on this month.
While Villa fits the profile of a typical MLS signing (old in the tooth, but still a profile name), I expect his signing to work for the Manchester City/New York Yankees aligned club. He’ll be 33 when their season kicks off, but he brings a professionalism, as well as a proven attack prowess to any club. He’s also versatile. While at Barcelona, he did most of his damage out on the left wing, but with Atletico as well as for Spain he can play as a target striker. With MLS, I feel his position will be up front as either a lone striker, or playing as a secondary striker, working with a larger target man.
So, Villa is the first cornerstone for NYCFC. Reports are out there that Chelsea, and English National Team, midfielder Frank Lampard will soon follow. Hopefully those reports are accurate as the 35 year old still has enough gas left to provide a strong impact on the MLS game. Manager Jason Kreis, and director Claudio Reyna, will have some work ahead of them as far as assembling a roster, but with the backing of current Barclays Premier League champion Manchester City, they should have all that they need in order to set NYCFC up for a good debut season with MLS.
Welcome to the States, David Villa. Much success to you, and maybe I’ll take the train up to Yankee Stadium and check out NYCFC.
Thanks for reading.
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