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Villarreal at Cadiz: La Liga Preview

Unai Emery’s side looks to follow up their Europa League start with another La Liga win.

Villarreal CF v Sivasspor: Group I - UEFA Europa League Photo by Manuel Queimadelos/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

A lot of thoughts just crash into my head as I begin to preview this match... “we’re a lot better than Cadiz”, “they just beat Real Madrid”, “we have to defend better than we did against Sivasspor”, “Paco Alacacer is unstoppable”... okay, maybe the last one just pops into my head whether I’m thinking about Sunday’s match or not, but still, we have our work cut out for us this week in a match we ought to win.

Our opponents

We really do all live in a Yellow Submarine this week, as the Andalusian club not only wears yellow but uses the same moniker based on a Beatles song that is popular amongst Villarreal fans. They even play in a similar size stadium to us, as the Ramon de Carranza seats about 21,000 people. Cadiz were a regular in La Liga during the 1980s, but their best ever finish was 12th.

We have played them six times in the past and have won two and drawn the other four. Our only time previously facing them in league play was in 2005-2006, where we drew both matches.

I honestly don’t know much about this team. Had wanted to watch them play Madrid last week and just wasn’t able to make it work. I do know they generated more shots than the champions despite only having 25% of the ball, so if Emery presses high with his CBs there’s a pretty good chance Albiol get’s caught out in transition. They also had 11 corners that match, which seems preposterously high.


We’re still banged up, I’m starting to really dislike Francis Coquelin suiting up for us but I think there is very little chance we avoid that in this one. The big question, of course, will be whether Take Kubo’s performance against Sivasspor gets him a nod in the starting lineup. The formation situation last match was very odd. The club expressly put out a graphic showing a 433 with Kubo on the right and Chukwueze on the left and neither player stuck primarily to one side or the other and honestly to me it looked more like some sort of unholy 442/4411/4231 hybrid. In that same graphic, Baena was listed as being in the middle of three CMs and he spent his whole shift on the left, so I dunno. Anyway, here’s my predicted lineup for this match, though I’m less confident about it than I’ve been of others so far this season:


Give Paco the ball, good things will happen. 2-1 win.