In 2013/14, David Villa has won the La Liga title with Atletico Madrid, he just missed out on a Champions League winners medal against arch-rivals Real Madrid, and is set to be in the Spain squad that will look to defend the World Cup title in Brazil. But in a shock twist that not many saw coming, the star forward looks certain to join New York City FC in Major League Soccer.
According to multiple sources including Spanish radio and newspapers as well as agents in the football industry and MLS writers the 32-year old looks likely to sign a three-year contract with the expansion franchise before the start of the 2015 Major League Soccer season.
Villa has been a household name on the world football scene for nearly a decade but has suffered with injuries that do unfortunately put a question mark on his head. New York are obviously putting a bigger, longer deal on the table than Atleti, who we assume wouldn't offer Villa a further three years on big wages.
There is a link with Villa and NYCFC already that surely helped in the negotiations. Txiki Begiristain and Ferran Soriano were two of the men that were instrumental in bringing the striker from Valencia to Barcelona in 2010. The duo are now at Manchester City - who basically own the New York franchise - and work on all aspects of the team, from backroom matters to the on-pitch talent.
New York City are an expansion team don't currently play in MLS so Villa would get an extended 6-month holiday from the time his Atletico contract expires at the end of June to pre-season MLS training which starts in January.
The striker scored 13 times in La Liga for Atleti this season as they won the sides first league title since 1996. Villa has been named in Vicente del Bosque's preliminary 30-man squad for the World Cup and will be hoping to make the final 23 and play in Brazil this summer.