Monday, September 27, 2010

David Villa sees red for left jab

Lost in Barcelona's 3-1 win over Athletic Bilbao on the weekend was David Villa's straight red card which will very likely result in a 2-3 game suspension. In some fairness to Villa, Gurpegi was riding him like a jockey and somehow avoided a whistle himself with the referee standing nearby. However, Villa lashed out with his left fist and was immediately sent off. An end to a frustrating evening no doubt.

And a frustrating season as well, as Villa has only found the back of the net three times in all competitions. For some players that would be a thrill. But not the calibre of Villa. 31 shots, two posts, nine turned aside by great goalkeeping. He's also given the ball away 61 times, most of any player on the team.

You can only really point to bad luck. Obviously, his summer was a successful one and it seemed as though he could score blindfolded at the World Cup. He has had a number of guilt-edged chances so far this season but simply can't score, and we all know he is one the deadliest strikers on the planet. This punch was expected at some point, I imagine, and the Barcelona press have practically ignored the entire episode. Their only worry is that he may miss his first opportunity to face former club Valencia. It only goes to show that they, and any Barcelona fan for that matter, are confident he will start scoring at some point. He is just too good not too.

Hopefully this is the first and last such episode from Villa. A team already thinned out at the forward position can ill afford less options.

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