19th Time's the Charm: Villarreal Visits Racing Santander

Tough times in Santander.

Maybe that's not quite the saying. But Villarreal needs some sort of luck to finally win an away game.

After twelve league matches without a victory away from El Madrigal, plus six straight road losses in European competition, it's past time to bust the streak. And we've only scored eight goals in those eighteen matches. Will a visit to colista Racing Santander do the trick?

Racing has the worst home form in La Liga, having picked up just five points this season at El Sardinero. And the storm clouds surrounding the club after the rise and fall of Indian (I am sorry to say) owner Ahsan Ali Syed are bursting. With Racing in administration, and its manager having resigned to effectively save money, Saturday's match is not the top priority of everyone at the club.

Spare a thought for the cantabros, located in the birthplace of the largest bank in the Eurozone. And they make great wine in that part of Spain. Speaking of which, Villarreal now has an official wine. Cheers!

El Villarreal presenta su vino oficial (via LIGABBVA)

Racing first played in La Liga in 1929 and finished as runners-up two seasons later. Too bad they can now only afford a €100,000 striker in the winter transfer window. Times aren't so bad in Vila-real, eh?

Manager Juan Carlos Garrido's 18-man squad:

Keepers: D. López, César.
Defenders: Mario, Gonzalo, Lejeune, Musacchio, Oriol, J. Costa, Ángel.
Midfielders: Bruno, Senna, Borja, de Guzmán, Cani, Moisés, H. Pérez.
Strikers: Ruben, Nilmar.

Allen, Sid and Ravi breakdown this game and give their predictions - 8 min


Remember Rubén Cani, Nilmar, and Marcos Senna? They're back. And so are Florian Lejeune and Moisés Gómez; left back Jaume Costa debuts(!) with the 'A' team.

Villarreal drew 2-2 last season at El Sardinero, but Racing no longer has Giovani dos Santos. And the Yellow Submarine cannot fall back on a big points cushion. So we need three points tomorrow.

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