Former Barcelona striker David Villa moves to India
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Former Barcelona striker David Villa moves to India

Former FC Barcelona striker David Villa has taken up a global football strategy role with Indian Super League side Odisha FC.

According to the club president Raj Athwal, via Sky Sports, Villa's arrival is a "statement of intent" with Odisha Sports and Tourism Secretary Vishal Dev adding that the former striker "is everything that success in a footballing career stands for"

Villa said of the appointment: "I will try and bring my experience (to the role). 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.

39-year-old Villa won 15 trophies during his playing career and will advise and help shape Odisha's football and recruitment strategy.

Villa remains Spain's all-time leading goal scorer and apart from Barcelona, he represented Atletico Madrid and New York City among other teams in his club career.

Villa only hung up his boots at the end of last season following a spell at Vissel Kobe in Japan where he played alongside former Barcelona team-mate Andres Iniesta, scoring 13 goals in 28 J-League appearances.

The four-time La Liga title winner is two months younger than AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, and a year younger than Arsenal midfielder Robert Pires was when he participated in the inaugural season of the Indian Super League back in 2014, aged 40.

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