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Villarreal see off Osasuna with superb away performance to strengthen Europa League spot

The Yellows were excellent in Pamplona

Samuel Chuckweze (L) Jose Luis Morales and Alex Baena (R)...
Morales got a double off the bench
Photo by Francis Gonzalez/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Villarreal consolidated their top six spot with an impressive away win over Osasuna on Sunday afternoon.

The Yellows knew they needed a reaction after a bitterly disappointing Conference League exit during the week, and they provided one.

Samu Chukwueze put Villarreal aheadafter just 14 minutes, turning home an excellently-placed Alfonso Pedraza cross with his knee.

And the winger thought he had scored a second only for VAR to catch him offside.

Quique Setién’s men controlled the game well at El Sadar, albeit the home side did hit the bar in the second half.

Substitute Jose Luis Morales put the game to bed, and in some style. The former Levante star intercepted the ball 45 yards out and took aim from that spot, catching goalkeeper Aitor Fernandez off his line.

Morales also found time for a third in stoppage time, sliding in to turn home Yeremy Pino’s cross. Yeremy was superb all afternoon.

It was a very impressive away performance from Villarreal, but there were some negatives. Gerard Moreno went off with an injury during the first half. It appeared to either by his ankle or lower calf, though it was perhaps the latter given he appeared to have an injection after taking to the bench.

Pedraza also went off with what appeared to be a broken nose after a nasty collision.

Thankfully, the international break now takes hold, though, it’s not clear whether Gerard will now link up with Spain due to his injury. It is possible he was taken off to protect his upcoming games with Spain.

The other downside is that Real Betis and Real Sociedad both won on Sunday, but in any case, Villarreal have strengthened their position in sixth place, now five points clear of Athletic Club in seventh ahead of a tough run of games.

The Yellows play Real Sociedad and Real Madrid in their first two games after the break.