Mountaineer Villa's recovery on track
David Villa gave a graphic demonstration that he is on track to return to action from a broken leg before the end of the season when he scaled the 1 104-metre (3 622-foot) La Mola mountain near Barcelona on Thursday.
The Barca and Spain forward fractured his left leg at the Club World Cup four months ago this Sunday and doctors said after surgery on December 19 that the 30-year-old would be sidelined for four to five months.
Villa is aiming to be back in time for a possible Champions League final on May 19.
Spain's all-time leading scorer, whose goals were key to the country's Euro 2008 and 2010 World Cup triumphs, also hopes to make a return to the national squad to help them defend their continental title at Euro 2012 the following month.
"The leg is getting better all the time," Villa wrote on his Twitter feed, where he also posted a link to a photo of himself at the top of the mountain with teammate Sergio Busquets and two club officials.
"We are in line with the timetable set out," he added.
Villa's return would be a huge boost for Barca in the final weeks of the season as they seek to defend their Spanish and European titles. They are also through to May 25's King's Cup final, when they will play La Liga rivals Athletic Bilbao.
With six games of the league campaign left, Barca are four points behind arch rivals Real Madrid, whom they host on April 21. They play Chelsea over two legs in the semifinals of the Champions League on April 18 and 24.