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Valencia-Villarreal EUROPA LEAGUE PREVIEW

The odds are certainly against us, but....

Villarreal v Valencia - UEFA Europa League Quarter Final : First Leg Photo by Fotopress/Getty Images

Villarreal make the short trek down the V-21 to visit Valencia at the Mestalla tomorrow. 600 groguets are making the trip as well, hoping to cheer the Submarine to a famous victory.

After collapsing to a 3-1 defeat in the home leg, let’s be honest—it’s not too likely. But, as Javi Calleja said today in his press conference, “we’ll see what happens.” Of course, with a highly important home match on Sunday, Villarreal can’t put out their strongest lineup—they need to make some rotations. We will have a number of young players in the squad who may get a chance to show their stuff—and we do know that Manu Trigueros will be in the starting lineup, since that was announced at his press conference today. Jaume Costa and Javi Fuego have been given the medical all-clear, too, and Jaume would like to play in his hometown, I’m sure. Alvaro is suspended for this one.

Valencia are in pretty good shape but they, too, will be looking to rotate some players ahead of a tough away game Sunday at Betis, as Los Che fight for the top four again. I expect the home side will be content to take the air out of the ball, so to speak, and focus on keeping Villarreal from scoring, knowing that Villarreal have to win by three clear goals to advance.

Prediction: 1-1 draw, Valencia move on 4-2 on aggregate—this will be the score draw we should have had in the first leg.