Perhaps the only real takeaway from us turning on Victoria CF like the Death Star on Alderaan was that GERARD MORENO IS BACK. As talented as so many players are in this club, it is Gerard who knits together the midfield and attack with his deep dropping play and it is Gerard who always provides an inspired goal when we need him. Nothing else could be more important as we walk into one of the most legendary stadiums in Spain looking for a result over a team currently in Champions League places.
Sevilla are very much having the kind of season I anticipated for Villarreal before a ball was kicked this year. They are fourth in La Liga with 24 goals scored to only eleven conceded. Twelve points currently separate us from them in the table.
Fortunately for us, Sevilla is a side we’ve played very well against in recent years. They have only beaten us once in the last five outings against us, and we all remember last May when Carlos Bacca rained in a hat trick on them. That said, Sevilla have won 7 of their last 8 home matches in La Liga and drew the other one, and they will be a very, very tough side to beat this weekend.
I’m curious to see what Unai does up front in this one. Both Paco and Boulaye got the goals they so badly needed against Victoria, and I am interested to see if Emery uses that as a reason to give either of them a chance to press on in the starting lineup in the league. If even one of our strikers can get back on track, it would give our attack the focal point it so desperately neeeds, and the knock on effect would push some of our true wingers back out wide giving us more genuine width and a more attacking look.
I’ve said it repeatedly in the last few weeks, but this Villarreal side is built for speed and directness. Emeryball is well and good and has its place, but dinking around slow, short passes is not how we are going to beat Sevilla. To get the win we so badly need we need to hit them hard over the top and finish before their defense recovers.
Gerard coming back has me full of hope. 2-1 Villarreal win!