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Barcelona wins; Villarreal does too!

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Barca's Copa del Rey win means Villarreal go directly into the Europa League Group Stage next fall. No trips to Belarus or Kazahstan for us this time!

Alex Caparros/Getty Images

The good news for Villarreal is that Barcelona's Copa del Rey victory means the Yellow Submarine qualify directly for the group stage of the 2015-16 Europa League.   As compared to last year, when we had to play in the playoff round in mid-August, we don't start our campaign until September 17.  The draw for the groups will be held August 28.

As things stand now, Villarreal could be the only Spanish team in the group stage.  Valencia will join us if they lose their Champions League playoff round match, and Athletic Bilbao will join us if they win through the third qualifying round and subsequent playoff round.

Endavant Villarreal!!