Part of the Spain team that won Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010, David Villa boasts a goalscoring pedigree to rival any of Manchester City’s current attacking options – so could Manuel Pellegrini call on the 32-year-old in the event of an emergency.
That’s the question many are posing after seeing the positive impact being made by Frank Lampard, currently turning out for City on loan from their soon-to-launch MLS franchise New York City.
Originally set to head back to the States in January, the 36-year-old’s loan has already been extended to the end of that month in a bid to cover for the absence of Yaya Toure and may even be pushed back even further.
While some camps have criticised the move as a clever way of getting around Financial Fair Play regulations, some Citizens fans must now be wondering whether there is any way a similar deal could be struck for Villa.
Officially a New York City player, the Spaniard is all set to move to Melbourne City on a temporary loan deal that would see him play ten games for the Australian club.
And while Villa is far from being the same striker that starred for Barcelona in the Champions League all those years ago, NYC FC manager Jason Kreis has been full of praise for the ex-Atletico Madrid man, who has been training in the States ahead of his switch Down Under.
"He's been training here in NYC, and I spent some time with him in the past week," Kreis told the Manchester Evening News. "He looks ready to go."
Part of the Atleti side that reached the final of the European Cup just last season, many were surprised that Villa opted to move the US, let alone Australia, given his age and the ability he undoubtedly possesses.
A solid return of 15 goals in all competitions, with this tally including a memorable strike against old club Barca in the Spanish Super Cup, suggests he could do a job in the Premier League and City may just need him.
Hamstrung by Financial Fair Play regulations, the club has already allowed Alvaro Negredo to depart, while Stevan Jovetic’s injury problems continue.
That leaves the Sky Blues with just Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero as the club’s two recognised strikers and with the latter of the pair proving prone to injury, there could yet be a shortage in the final third.
If such a scenario were to play out then the validity of the New York City and Melbourne City projects could well be put to the test.
Would owners Manchester City put the Premier League side’s needs ahead of the newly-formed pair, in a bid to ensure the club continues to compete in the top-flight and also the Champions League?
More importantly, are City capable of thrashing out a deal that would see Villa move to the club legitimately and within the rules of the leagues involved? And was this plan at the back of the club’s mind the entire time?
After seeing the impact made by Lampard, there is certainly plenty of food for thought on the subject, whether it is ultimately a valid concern or not.
Would City benefit from bringing David Villa in?