Let's face it. We were all pretty bummed this week when the news broke that Barcelona superstar David Villa was not coming to Spurs after all. The deal certainly seemed done and dusted. We were already starting to tally the goals next season, and then Atletico Madrid swoops in and plucks him right out from under our noses.
It was, to say the least, pretty aggravating.
Now, England's The Express newspaper has revealed some new details on what happened with David Villa. The article reports that Villa was set to sign for Spurs after agreeing to personal terms and with Barcelona ready to accept an £8m bid. And then, Barcelona accepted a bid of £4.5m from Atletico and the deal was scuppered.
Yes, that's right. Spurs were gazumped by a bid that was just over half of what they expected to pay for David Villa. Let's all take a moment to be angry about that, shall we?
... Good. GOOD. Use your aggressive feelings, people. Let the hate flow through you.
Okay, are we done? Here's why the Atletico transfer makes sense.
David Villa has played his entire career in Spain. He's Spanish through and through. His family is in Spain. The reason he was linked to English clubs is because those clubs were the only ones that at the time appeared to show interest in signing an aging Spanish superstar coming off of a leg injury. At the time, Spurs provided the best possible deal, even though it was clear that he'd have to take a pretty substantial wage hit to play in north London.
The Express article doesn't explicitly say this, but I'd be willing to bet my daughter's 2009 David Bentley jersey that Atletico offered Villa not only the chance to stay in Spain, but the majority – if not all – of the wages that he was receiving at Barcelona. And let's not minimize the "staying in Spain" thing either. Once a prominent Spanish club came in with a bid for Villa that met his wage demands and allowed him to stay in the country of his birth, it was all over. The £4.5m fee? It feels like a kick in the groin, but it assuredly kept Villa happy. And it's not like Barcelona needs the money.
At any rate, the deal is done and there's no going back now. This is one of those situations that is painful for us fans to live through, but looks a little different when you step back and look at it with some perspective. Footballers are people too. Sometimes the best/most profitable move isn't necessarily the right one.