David Villa has won the World Cup, a pair of European Championships, and three La Liga titles, but the reigning MLS MVP thinks he’s under more pressure at New York City FC than ever before in his decorated career.
Villa became the first player in NYCFC history when he joined the club in June 2014. Now 35, the Spanish legend has been excellent in MLS, recording 18 goals and eight assists in 2015 before tallying 23 goals and four assists to lead NYCFC to their first playoff appearance and win the MVP award this year.
“There’s a lot of pressure, no? Here more than ever because I was the first player, the captain,” Villa told Uproxx in an interview published on Thursday. “At the same time, it’s a lot of pressure, very proud for me that NYCFC chose me to be the first player.”
Villa also had a message for anyone with what he termed a "nasty" opinion of MLS' quality of play or as a home for aging stars looking for a last paycheck.
“People sometimes have opinions that are nasty, no?,” he added. “I mentioned yesterday – if the people coming here are watching one month, three, four games, it’s impossible to have this opinion. The people who have this opinion have never watched a game in MLS. It’s not important for the people who want to build this league because this opinion is not true.”