Barcelona vow to win Club World Cup for injured David Villa

 

European champions Barcelona have pledged to capture the Club World Cup for striker David Villa, who suffered a sickening leg break in Thursday's semi-final in Japan.

The Spanish giants crushed Qatar's Al Sadd 4-0 in Yokohama, hardly breaking sweat, but the victory was marred by the injury to Villa, who snapped his left shin in the first half.

"The players all felt sick for David after the game," Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola told reporters. "They are very down. I told them it can happen to anyone at any time.

"David is going to be out for a long time and now we will have to win the Club World Cup without him. It will take a long time to return from this kind of break."

Barca, bidding to win the seven-team tournament for the second time in three years, take on Brazil's Santos and their talented teenage striker Neymar in Sunday's final.

The Catalans closed training to the media on Friday following the injury blow to Villa, who is expected to be out for up to five months.

"This will be an extremely difficult time for David," Barcelona captain Carles Puyol said, echoing the sentiments of his coach.

Villa's injury is also a setback for World Cup holders Spain as they prepare to defend their European Championship title in Poland and Ukraine next year.

"Our thoughts are with our player who must return for an operation," Guardiola snapped when asked who would replace Villa in the final. "Don't ask me about tactics now."

Puyol grimaced when asked about stopping Neymar, who has turned down a fortune from several top clubs in Europe to stay at Santos until after the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

"It will be very difficult to mark Neymar," Puyol said of the 19-year-old. "He's got such great speed. He's already a great player and has fantastic potential for the future.

"He has quick feet and does amazing things. He can switch from right to left or left to right so he's very unpredictable when he gets on the ball.

"Everyone is talking about Neymar but Santos have many dangerous players."

Argentine midfielder Javier Mascherano, who also picked up a knock against Al Sadd, promised Barca would not underestimate the South American Libertadores Cup holders.

"Santos are a very good side and they have some quality players in attack, like Neymar and (Paulo Henrique) Ganso," said the former Liverpool enforcer.

"They have experience and their coach (Muricy Ramalho) is very clever. We have a lot of respect for them. Right now though we all feel terrible for David and need to support him."

Reuters

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Suited and booted in the Lanvin show at the Paris menswear collections
fashionParis Fashion Week
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Kara Tointon and Jeremy Piven star in Mr Selfridge
tvActress Kara Tointon on what to expect from Series 3
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
An asteroid is set to pass so close to Earth it will be visible with binoculars
news
News
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project