David Villa Retires From International Football
David Villa ends Spain’s career with 59th goal in Aussie Cruise, where Spain triumphed 3-0. Villa was able to sign off in his international career in style after he stuck a dagger into Australia’s heart after Australia’s fine start. Collecting the cutback from Juanfran, the departing legendary striker produced an elegant backheel to put the ball beyond keeper Mathew Ryan and open the floodgates for his side.
It was Villa’s 59th international goal in his 97th and final cap. But Villa couldn’t hide his emotions when substituted during Spain’s win against Australia.
The 32-year-old announced his retirement from playing for his country prior to the World Cup and is set to link-up with New York FC when the defending world champions fly back from Brazil.
And the raw feeling was plain for all to see when Villa was hooked by Vicente Del Bosque in the second half of the 3-0 win.Team-mates rushed to console the striker as he exited in the 57th minute.
Though he seemed to be holding it together as he trudged off, Villa appeared to burst into tears when he sat down on the bench. Pedro, Iker Casillas and Gerard Pique were up in appreciation as he came off.
More on David Villa’s International Career:
Villa made his international début for Spain in 2005. He has since became an integral member of Spain’s football team, participating in 4 major tournaments and winning the Euro 2008 and 2010 World Cup. He scored 3 goals in the 2006 World Cup, was the top scorer at the Euro 2008 and earned the Silver Boot at the 2010 World Cup. Villa is the first Spanish player ever to reach 50 international goals and is Spain’s all-time top goalscorer, having also scored more World Cup goals than any other Spanish Footballer. Villa scored 9 goals in 12 games at the World Cup, 4 more than any other Spanish Player. The goals-to-goals ratio Villa has achieved for Spain’s national team has not been matched by any player since Alfredo Di Stefano.
What’s even more amazing is that despite sustaining a serious injury to his right leg which jeopardised his chances of becoming a footballer when Villa was 4, Villa went on and built a stellar Football career, joining the likes of Sporting de Gijon, Real Zaragoza, Valencia CF, FC Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and eventually New York City FC.
Spain’s all time top scorer will be greatly missed as they search for younger blood to restock for the Euro 2016.
*Featured image by Jon Super/Associated Press