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Villarreal 1-3 Celta: what is wrong with this team?

Is it the coach? Time for a change already?

Villarreal v Celta De Vigo - La Liga Photo by Maria Jose Segovia/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Villarreal were beaten today at home 3-1 by Celta Vigo. It was Celta’s first win away from home since last December (also against us) and first time they have scored multiple goals away from home this season.

With our next three matches against Valencia (away), Atleti (home), and Sevilla (away), it’s quite possible we could be looking at 18 points after 17 matches and within a few points of the drop zone.

Takeaways from this one:

(1) First half we were slow to get going, then we looked the better side but not particularly dangerous. The defense never looked comfortable and early in the second half was opened up by a through ball—it seemed like an easy stop for Asenjo but the ball bounced over him and in to the net. Lack of concentration?

(2) Quick response to pull even again—Calleja yanked Iborra (on a yellow) for Moi, and he was involved in the play to set up Quintillà’s pass to Samu. For about the next 15 minutes it looked as if we were surely going to score again, but then another concentration lapse—no one picked up Iago Aspas and the free kick found him.

(3) I understand Bacca scored two late goals last year and Ekambi was not doing much, but I would have brought on Ontiveros then too.

(4) If you needed any convincing that Albiol has been a key player for us, look at today. Pau had probably his worst game of the season (not that it was that bad)—Funes Mori and he had trouble with their spacing, and FM’s positioning problems were exploited because Ruben Peña got caught upfield time and time again.

(5) When Santi, Gerard and Iborra aren’t at the top of their game, this team struggles. And today we saw that; Santi was OK but fairly quiet, Gerard’s touch and shooting skills were below his standard today, while Iborra was handicapped with a quick yellow card.

And for all our offensive prowess, we spent a lot of time looking at each other trying to figure out what to do, it looked like. There just wasn’t enough movement off the ball a lot of the time.

(6) The 4-1-4-1 was problematic anyway, but especially so once Iborra was subbed. Anguissa seemed to be trying to do too much on offense at the expense of defense, and there was just too much room for Celta to run into once they had broken up our attack.

MoM: Chukwueze.

Poor: Asenjo, Peña, Funes Mori

So-so: everybody else


Time for Calleja to take another vacation? Do we replace him before Christmas?

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