Villarreal lost to Atletico Madrid for the first time in a while—I take no pleasure from predicting the scoreline! The rojiblancos looked the better team for most of the day, to be honest. Villarreal needed something to trouble Atleti, and it didn’t happen—Toko Ekambi had a chance early on from a Bacca feed that Oblak saved; if that had gone in, who knows how the game might have changed.
Atleti took the lead just after the half-hour mark, Alvaro Morata managing to avoid the challenge of Victor Ruiz to volley home Felipe Luis’s pass.
Villarreal had some chances to equalize; Mario Gaspar was wide open in the box but Carlos Bacca tried to do too much and lost the pass angle, Gerard (who came on for Bacca) had a shot blocked by Gimenez. With Villarreal throwing people forward for the winner, Atleti scored the insurance goal with Saul chipping over Asenjo with two minutes left.
Disappointing to lose to Atleti after so much success. And, Alvaro picked up a yellow so will be suspended for our next match, and Santy Caseres came out with a possible injury. Highlights here and here.
If Betis, Real Madrid and Real Sociedad all win on the road, then at least we won’t lose much ground on the teams ahead of us. But next week’s home match against Alaves is a must win for us. Endavant.