THUMB ONLY - Villa Players Tribune - Father's Day 2018

"A boy! He's going to be my little footballer!"

In a moving essay for The Players Tribune  (In Spanish: click here), New York City FC striker David Villa reveals the legend of his father's first words after his birth — and how the vision was realized.

"My father had to risk his life to feed his family, and he wanted a better life for me," Villa writes. "Without him, I would never have played for Valencia, Barça or Atletico Madrid. I’d never have won the World Cup. I’d never have joined New York City. Hell, I wouldn’t even be able to run properly.

"This might sound like a joke, but it’s really true ..."

Find out how Villa's father helped him develop into one of the world's greatest strikers, and the influence a coal mining background and attitudes had on El Guaje raising his own children, in the full piece.