Spain forward David Villa will miss Euro 2012 as he struggles to recover from a broken leg. The Barcelona striker fractured his tibia in December and told national coach Vicente del Bosque on yesterday that he will not be fit for the tournament which starts on the 8th June.
Villa is Spain's (5/2 to win Euro 2012) record goalscorer with 51 goals in 82 games and Del Bosque, who names his final squad for the tournament on Sunday, had promised he would give Villa as long as possible to return to fitness.
A statement from the Spanish FA said "Villa spoke with the national team coach this afternoon, after the team arrived in Schruns, Austria (for a pre-tournament training camp). After not getting in the final practice and development desired, David Villa spoke with Del Bosque, who relayed that although it was Villa's wish to be with the team in Poland and Ukraine, that his physical state was 'not as good' as would be desirable."
Spain are also likely to be without veteran defender Carlos Puyol, who is struggling with a knee injury, as they seek to defend the title they won in Vienna in 2008. Spain (1/2 to win Group C) won all eight of their qualifiers for Euro 2012 and are in Group C for the finals along with Italy, against whom they play their opening game on June 10, Republic of Ireland and Croatia.