[OP-ED]: Bacca comes back to Spain with high hopes for Russia 2018
There is no doubt Villarreal CF is one of the most impressive clubs in planet football. With a population slightly over 50,000 people, this city of the Castellon province, located 50 miles from Valencia has a soccer team, nicknamed The Yellow Submarine that has been capable of staying at Spain’s elite along powerhouses like Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Sevilla FC.
One of the main reasons behind the club’s success is the great development academy the club has built. The other one is signing year after year effective players that have turned in Villarreal into La Liga’s best. As main examples of those we have Argentinean Luciano Vietto, Brazilian Leo Baptistao and Spaniard Denis Suarez. All of them have been transferred now to other teams. In this occasion, The Yellow Submarine has chosen Colombian forward Carlos Bacca as the iconic player to keep the squad at the top of La Liga and try to climb the Europa League summit.
After spending two seasons at A.C. Milan, Bacca decided to come back to Spain, where he had two sensational years at Seville. The Colombian striker was key for Sevilla FC claiming consecutive Europa League championships in 2014 and 2015. Bacca scored 49 goals in two seasons with the squad from Andalusia, including a pair of tallies against Dnipro from Ukraine in the 2015 final contest in which Sevilla FC won, 3-2.
“I enjoyed my time in Milan, but the team has many forwards now”, said Bacca when he was introduced to Villarreal fans at Estadio La Cerámica. “I am coming here to improve my stats, because we are in a World Cup year and in Italy I did not see clear chances of enjoying playing time”.
In the Spanish league, teams play more openly than in Italy, which will benefit Bacca’s purposes. He will try to keep pairing with Radamel Falcao in Colombia’s National Team offense. Colombia has an excellent squad that displays beautiful soccer with a great attacking style. The country is close to securing again a bid to participate in the World Cup, being second in the South American qualifying group with 24 points, holding a one-point lead over Chile and Uruguay and two over Argentina.
Bacca has played in 13 of 14 contests, scoring three goals. The striker is confident in participating at Colombia’s visit to Venezuela next Thursday, August the 31st, and then in the matchup against leader Brazil on Colombian soil, a game that will be held in Barranquilla, the city that saw him made his debut as a professional player, where he also scored two goals on Ecuador in this same qualifying tournament.
Colombia was one of the teams that displayed better soccer in the 2014 World Cup held in Brazil, losing only to the host team in the quarterfinal round. With the nucleus of the squad intact, if the Latin Americans clinch a World Cup spot, they will form one of the teams to beat at Russia 2018. Bacca wants to take part in the event. He has all the attacking skills to play a main role. As he said: “this is a World Cup year”, so the successes he achieves in Villarreal will be directly related with the continuity manager José Pekerman gives him playing for Colombia.