sport

Villa confirms Atletico exit

Spain striker David Villa has announced he will leave La Liga champions Atletico Madrid after receiving an "irresistible" offer thought to be from MLS side New York City FC.

The 32-year-old was spotted in Manchester's Bridgewater Hospital on Saturday, where he was said to be undergoing a medical ahead of a move to Manchester City's U.S. franchise.

"It is an irresistible project for me and my family, it is very, very good. It is about football and I have to accept it," Villa said in a message to fans published on the Atletico website.

"I will be a fan of Atletico all my life for what they have given me this year."

According to a report in the Sunday Mirror, if Villa's expected move to New York City FC goes through, one of his potential team-mates could well be current Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard.

Lampard, who is out of contract this summer, has not yet been offered a new deal at Stamford Bridge.

The 35-year-old is thought to be weighing up his options, with a lucrative swansong at the ambitious New York side thought to be one of them.

Spain star Villa, who has been named in Spain's 23-man World Cup squad, moved to Atletico from Barcelona ahead of last season and, leading the attack alongside Diego Costa, helped them win a first La Liga title since 1996.

They also came within 90 seconds of winning the Champions League before Real Madrid rallied to claim the title 4-1 after extra time in last week's final in Lisbon.

"It has been a great project for me both personally as well as sporting and now I face a new challenge which is what I have always looked to do in my career and my life," he added.

"I would like to thank the people at Atletico and those that tried to convince me to stay, like Cholo (coach Diego Simeone) and the rest of the coaching staff."