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ISL’s Odisha FC Rope in David Villa to Lead Global Football Operations

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Indian Super League (ISL) side Odisha FC on Thursday announced David Villa will lead their global football operations.

“World Cup winner and Spanish football legend @Guaje7Villa (David Villa) has been brought in by Odisha FC to spearhead our global football operations,” Odisha FC tweeted.

Former OFC Head Coach, Josep Gombau and Victor Onate are also a part of the club’s Technical Football Committee along with David Villa.

“I will try and bring my experience [to the role],” Villa said in an exclusive interview with Sky Sports News.

“Obviously, I didn’t play in India but I played soccer for 20 years as a professional and before that in the academy. And in all of the projects that we [my team] are involved in, I try to give all of my experience that I have in soccer.

“I was very lucky to have played with great players, behind me and close to me [and I also played under some] big coaches, amazing coaches. I have played in the big tournaments of football, and I will try and help using all of that experience.”

Odisha FC finished last on the points table for ISL 2020-21 season having just 12 points from 20 games.

When Villa was asked if he was tempted to come out of retirement and play in the ISL, Villa said: “It was the first question of the people of Odisha!

“I took a decision a year ago to stop playing because I thought that was it was the [right] moment, not because I felt that I cannot play soccer anymore. I believe if I train I can play soccer for sure.

“But I thought that moment [when I decided to retire] was the right time. As you know, life is not just about soccer I am 39 and I played for 20 years as a soccer player.

Speaking about the development, OFC CEO Mr Rohan Sharma said, “It’s an absolute pleasure to welcome David Villa and the DV7 group to the Odisha FC family! It’s crazy to think that when I started watching football I used to see David on my TV. Now together we are trying to help grow football in Odisha.”

Villa has played for Sporting Gijon, Zaragoza, Valencia, Barcelona, and Atletico Madrid in Spain during his playing career, winning three La Liga titles, three Copa del Reysas well as the UEFA Champions League.

Villa chose to join Major League Soccer (MLS) side New York City in 2015 and played for Melbourne City FC in the A-League as well. His last outing was with Vissel Kobe of the J-League.

Villa, when playing for Spain, has won the Euro 2008 and FIFA World Cup 2010.

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