A big win for Villarreal today, 3-1 over Athletic Club, a result which not only puts Villarreal four points clear in fifth place, but effectively gives us a five-point cushion since we would win a tiebreak if even on points.
Villarreal came out with the sort of intensity we normally associate with the Basque side, and though that intensity wasn’t always well focused (six yellow cards and a straight red for Victor Ruiz in the 74th minute) the commitment and application were exemplary.
The goals came from Victor Ruiz, quickly equalized by Aymeric Laporte in the first half; in the second half, Villarreal scored via Bakambu and Adrian Lopez in the first fifteen minutes and then held on for the victory.
The downsides are an injury to Samu Castillejo—not sure how serious yet; Victor Ruiz is suspended for our next match; and Jonathan dos Santos did not make the bench today, though our coach says he will be available against Alaves.
Excellent from Ruiz and Musacchio, who neutralized the Iñaki-Aduriz combination for the most part (though Aduriz did hot a couple of posts, it must be said), and Andres Fernandez as well, also Roberto Soriano, Battling Jaume Costa, and Bruno. Well, pretty much everyone.
Endavant Villarreal!! Goals (and Ruiz’s harsh red card) here.