PURCHASE, N.Y.—David Villa has no interest in looking back, and that includes comparing the similarity in New York City FC’s start to each of its first two seasons.
“Last year is closed,” he said, after training Wednesday. “I see people on the Internet say the team has the same points [after six games] as last year. OK, I agree, but last year is over. This year we have another 28 games. I’m thinking of only this.”
Villa is pleading for patience from an NYCFC fan base desperate for wins.
“I understand people who follow NYCFC want wins quickly,” he said. “We play well and we deserve it in almost all the games. The other day, Columbus was better, but Columbus was better than almost all the teams in the league last year.”
While Villa has scored four goals in six games, all four goals have come in just two games, and NYCFC have not won either. He has been consistently dangerous – posting a league-best 14 shots on goal – and produced his sixth multi-goal game in 36 outings when he netted twice against Columbus Crew SC on Saturday.
“I know, individually, for me it's good that I’ve scored four goals, but the most important thing for me compared with last year is no injury,” Villa said. “Last year, in this situation I was injured. That is the most important for me. Obviously, I work for the team, not individually.”
A year ago, Villa scored 18 goals in 30 appearances despite those early-season injuries. He said he is feeling more comfortable in 2016, now that he is familiar with the travel, the venues and opponents. He and his teammates are also getting more comfortable under Patrick Vieira, who brought a different philosophy and different formations when he arrived in January.
“He is very good,” Villa said. “I like the work in training and the preparation for the games. Sometimes we don’t play [well], and we need to improve, but what the coach wants for the team, in my opinion, is really, really good.”