David Villa will almost certainly miss the remainder of the domestic season for Barcelona it was confirmed on Tuesday – and he now faces a battle to be fit for Spain’s defence of their European Championship crown.
Villa suffered broken shinbone during Barcelona’s Club World Cup semi-final victory over Al-Sadd last Thursday and the news will be a huge blow to Barcelona who will be without one of their main goalscoring threats for the remainder of the season.
Dr Ramon Cugat – who was part of the team that operated on Villa – said: “We hope to have Villa back in time for the European Championships.
“It will be cutting it close. I believe that it will take four to five months, but we have to see how he evolves. I could make a mistake if I give an exact date.”
He hasn’t been featuring as regularly for the Spanish and European champions in recent months but his absence will be keenly felt if Barca suffer any injuries to the likes of Alexis Sanchez
Pep Guardiola’s men remain a short 10/11 for the La Liga crown although Real Madrid – who are currently 4/5 to win the title – may start to look more tempting as Barca’s packed season starts to take its toll in the coming months.
The injury is undoubtedly worse news for Spain though, with Villa continuing to show his importance for his country.
He scored seven goals during their Euro 2012 qualifying campaign and has now bagged a fantastic 51 goals in 82 games for his country, making him Spain’s all-time leading goalscorer.
Spain remain favourites for the Euro 2012 title at 5/2 although, even if Villa does make the squad, his lack of fitness and game time may make Germany at 7/2 or Holland at 6/1 well worth consideration.