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Angel Makes the Cut

Great news: Angel managed to make the call for Wednesday's huge Champions League match against Panathinaikos. Here is the available squad:

Keepers: Diego López and Viera.
Defenders: Godin, Cygan, Fuentes, Javi Venta and Ángel.
Midfielders: Eguren, Senna, Cazorla, Ibagaza, Matías Fernández, Pires, Bruno and Cani.
Forwards: Rossi, Llorente and Nihat.

Notably, Guille did not make the squad. I think he has really become a necessity-only player for Villarreal. He has had his great moments, and his close moments (Remember the home leg against Arsenal? His ridiculously beautiful, but still unfruitful, backheel this season against Manchester United?), but I think he has seen the end of his productive time with the team.

A couple of interesting facts about the match. Did you know...

  • Panathinaikos used to wear red, at least in the early years after the club formed in 1908. Apparently (according to Marca), they changed their kits to green shortly after a bull got into their stadium during a training session and chased the players around. True? Who knows.
  • Villarreal have twice played Greek competition, and have won both matches.
  • Panathinaikos have lost every Champions League away match they have played in Spain (six). Over that stretch, they conceded 15 goals and scored two.
  • Villarreal have only made it this far once before in the Champions League (obviously). Panathinaikos has made it three times, advancing through the first knockout stage only once.
  • Villarreal have played nine Champions League matches at El Madrigal. During that stretch, they kept six clean sheets.
  • Panathinaikos has won three consecutive Champions League matches.

Full preview tomorrow, either by Nick or myself.