Villarreal news and musings, February 22

Valencia is interested in our Spanish international Bruno. €30m release price is all it takes, Los Che... (Photo by Gail Oskin/Getty Images)

Villarreal returned to training yesterday after a day off. Still not a whole lot of news, though. Major stories have been about Valencia being interested in Bruno Soriano, who says he is happy here:

"Quiero jubilarme aquí" - Deportes - El Periódico Mediterraneo

Marcos Senna was one of the players speaking to the media after the Mallorca loss, and he is now saying he would like to play one more year at Villarreal before he hangs up his boots:

El mejor Senna quiere quedarse una temporada más - Liga BBVA | Villarreal -

Assuming we remain in the Primera, this makes sense given we're facing only one game a week most of the time. no Europe for us, sadly.

Meanwhile, European football does go on, and Napoli, whom we know very well now after playing tem two straight years, knocked off Chelsea yesterday.

If you thought the English coverage of Villarreal's matches against Man City was condescending, yesterday was more of the same. The announcers commented on the "decrepit" stadium, the fact that Napoli had been in the third division at one point, and decided that apart from Lavezzi and Cavani "they were no better than a typical EPL side". Hm. How they qualified from a group than included Manchester City was never properly explained!

Returning to Villarreal, it's noted that we have 8 home games remaining out of 14, and those games are key to our survival:

El Madrigal tiene la llave de la salvación - Villarreal C.F.

Excluding the midweek home fixture against Madrid, wins in 6 of the 7 remaining matches plus a draw in the last would give us 45 points, probably enough to survive. Any home points dropped would need to be made up on the road. There's little room for error, therefore.

The most theoretically winnable away matches appear to be the next one (Real Zaragoza) and the next-to-last (Sporting Gijon), though we did beat Rayo and Betis in El Madrigal so might fancy our chances there as well.

Assuming no one suddenly goes on a hot streak (or collapses) I can see Racing getting to 43 points even with a loss at El Madrigal, and winning that match by a couple of goals is going to be key so we can own the tiebreak against them, as we do with Sevilla and Granada. But there's a long way to go yet....

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