La Roja said an emotional farewell to a Spanish hero as they won their last group match against Australia.
David Villa played his last international match, ending his Spanish career with a 3-0 win. It has come to the end of the road for Spain, but, they have regained some Spanish pride as Vicente Del Bosque’s men prove that glory days are still to come.
Spain, having played surprisingly well, actually managed to dominate one last game with three desperately awaited goals finding the back of Mathew Ryan’s net, from David Villa, Fernando Torres and Juan Mata.
The first goal being the best as a back heeled shot from Villa found the back of the net and notched up his 59th goal for La Roja –the last he will score.
The Aussies exit the competition without a single win as some dignity was restored for the Spanish side. Leaving a smile on the faces of the traveling fans, Spain salvaged what would go on to be the end of an era for many of its long-term players. Xavi failed to start, Iker Casillas was replaced with Pepe Reina, David Villa played his last game and the same fate looks set for several others, possibly even the coach, Vicente Del Bosque, himself.
Having declared his retirement from the national team, David Villa goes on to play in America next season and hangs up his Spanish boots for good. Villa holds 97 caps to his name, 59 goals and was the player to look out for in the 2010 World Cup.
Villa was able to sign off his international career in style. Spain’s all-time top scorer sparked some emotional scenes as he was reduced to tears after leaving the pitch, a heartfelt farewell for players and fans alike.
David Villa is Spain’s top scorer at the World Cup with nine goals in 12 games, four more than any other Spanish player. Indeed, Villa has scored in each of the last three World Cup finals. No other Spaniard has done the same.
So, we say goodbye one of Spain’s most loved players, a legendary striker till his last game. As well as a goal, Villa remained an endless threat for his team causing constant problems for the Australian defence. Spain now have to go on and show that there is hope when looking towards the future.
That future will lack David Villa. After a catastrophic tournament, Casillas is unlikely to continue too, Xavi looks ready to leave and Koke will likely replace Andres Iniesta.
Koke has admirable talent, but will undoubtedly have to improve his game in order to fill the legend’s boots as Iniesta still looks like Spain’s most dangerous player. Fernando Torres has seen better days to put it kindly and Sergio Ramos seems to be slowing down. Jordi Alba will remain, Jesus Navas may get a recall and Cesc Fabregas’ future is up for debate.
Whether Spain upgrade their game with a younger, more modern and faster generation is of course questionable but something that is entirely possible. However, Villa and his teammates will never be replaced nor forgotten as they were the team who achieved unprecedented back-to-back success for their country in its dominance from 2008 to 2012.
This World Cup not only marks the end for Spain, but for their most successful ever generation.
Where next for La Roja? Let us know your thoughts below or tweet us @LaFootyettes.