A bittersweet point on the road
A bittersweet point on the road


A superior Villarreal were on the brink of triumph at the RCDE Stadium (1-1)

So close. Villarreal come away with a point from their visit to Espanyol (1-1) in a match where the Yellows were superior and could have secured the win on several occasions. In the end, the Yellows picked up a hard-earned point, but a bittersweet one for Javi Calleja’s side as they were well organized throughout and created plenty of chances at the RCDE Stadium.

Villarreal started off with high intensity and fighting for every ball, looking fresh despite Thursday’s recent Europa League tie. Just five minutes in, Fornals gave the first warning to the locals as his shot struck the post after some great combination play by the Yellows.

In the 24th minute, after more brilliant attacking play by the Submarine, Rodrigo opened the scoring for the visitors. The Yellows midfielder hit a bullet of a shot into the back of the net after a late run into the box. The goal was the first for the young defensive midfielder in LaLiga, who really is one of the lungs of the Yellows side.  

During the first half an hour of the second half, Villarreal were in control and stopping Espanyol on the attack, who couldn’t get close to Asenjo. Calleja’s men, conscious of the importance of maintain their lead, were well organized and stopped the white-and-blues getting through.

With just over a quarter of an hour to play, Bacca received a great through ball and found himself up against Diego López one-on-one. The Colombian took the ball around the ex-Villarreal goalkeeper but, being chased by the Espanyol defence and with a forced attempt, he was not able to shoot with conviction approaching the six-yard box.

In the last ten minutes, Espanyol gave their last push and as a result, equalised in the 84th minute. The home side’s goal came from a direct free kick scored by Granero, the prior foul widely protested by the Yellows. In the end, Villarreal came away with a point from the RCDE Stadium but did enough to be able to take three.  


  • RCD Espanyol: Diego López; Víctor Sánchez, Naldo (Piatti, m. 66), David López, Aarón; Sergio Darder (Marc Navarro, m. 46), Carlos Sánchez, Granero; Leo Baptistao, Sergio García and Gerard Moreno.
  • Villarreal CF: Asenjo; Mario, Álvaro, Víctor Ruiz, Rukavina; Rodrigo, Javi Fuego, Fornals (Trigueros, m. 87), Raba, Cheryshev (Bacca, m. 71); and Enes Ünal (Soriano, m. 82).
  • Goals: 0-1. Min. 24: Rodrigo. 1-1. Min. 84: Granero.
  • Referee: José Luis Munuera Montero. Cautioned: Víctor Ruiz (m. 7), Mario (m. 43), Álvaro (m. 62), Javi Fuego (m. 64), Rodrigo (m. 75), Bacca (m. 84) and Rukavina (m. 85) for Villarreal; Sergio García (m. 34) for Espanyol.
  • Match Information: Match corresponding to Matchday 24 in the LaLiga Santander between RCD Espanyol and Villarreal CF played at the RCDE Stadium in Barcelona in front of 19,688 spectators.