Villa to respect old pals at Los Che
Barcelona striker David Villa insists he will not celebrate if he scores against former side Valencia later this month.
Villa will avoid celebrating as a mark of respect for the club he feels have made him the player he is today.
Barca host Valencia in the first game back when La Liga resumes after the international break and it promises to be an enthralling encounter at the Nou Camp.
Two-time reigning Spanish champions Barca are currently fourth in the standings while Valencia, despite seeing World Cup winners Villa, David Silva and Carlos Marchena leave this summer, are top of the pile with 16 points from a possible 18.
For Spain ace Villa the match will be an emotional one as it pits him against the club where he spent the past five years before his big-money move to Barca this summer.
"It’s very special for me because that’s the team where I’ve been very happy for the last five years," he said.
"It brings back very good memories. I’m happy to be facing them, especially being able to see all the friends I have there and to be able to enjoy their company even if it’s just one day," said Villa, who admits Los Che have played a crucial part in his career.
"My first steps were at Sporting (Gijon), then I played at Zaragoza but the club that have given me everything football-wise has been Valencia.
"In those five years I’ve been able to play for the national team, play in the Champions League, I’ve been able to fight for many titles, I’ve one won and there’s no doubt that those five years have been the most important of my life. Thanks to them I’m at Barca."
That does not mean Villa will not try and find the back of the net against Unai Emery’s table-toppers though, but the 28-year-old says he will keep his celebrations under wraps.
"I will try to score. I’m a professional and I’m defending Barca’s colours but it’s the same as against Sporting," he added on his club’s website.
"I have a great deal of affection for Valencia and in respect to all the people there and for all those who have made me better, I will not celebrate."