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Villarreal v Real Sociedad will be Saturday the 18th

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Villarreal v VfL Wolfsburg - UEFA Europa League Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

The first jornada of matches has been announced, and Villarreal play at 20.15 Spanish time on August 18.

This will be the only the second time we have opened against La Real; the first time was at the Anoeta in 2010. We lost that match (ex-Villarreal man Joseba Llorente scoring the winning goal, which is why I used his picture above), but then went on a long winning streak after that, made it to the Europa League semis, and finished fourth in the league. I mostly remember it because that was the first match I covered as a member of the Villarreal USA team!

As far as other matches:

Two on Friday (Girona-Valladolid, Betis-Levante) and two on Monday, including Valencia-Atleti, which looks like the plum tie of the round.