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A point in the face of difficulties (1-1)
A point in the face of difficulties (1-1)

Villarreal come away with a point from their trip to the Benito Villamarín, which was marked by bad luck and injuries

Villarreal CF got a point against Real Betis (1-1) in their visit to the Benito Villamarín in a game marked by bad luck and injuries, which frustrated Unai Emery’s side. An early Pau Torres goal was cancelled out by an Aitor Ruibal goal at the start of the second half for the home team.

Villarreal arrived at the Benit Villamarín with the aim of returning to winning ways, after three draws in a row in the league, against Elche, Real Sociedad and Real Madrid.

The main talking point in the starting line-up for the Yellows was Fer Niño’s first league start of the season, with Emery picking the youngster to come in and step up for the injured Paco Alcácer and Carlos Bacca. The Yellows No.34 started at the top of an attacking trident, accompanied by Gerard Moreno and Take Kubo. In midfield and at the back, Emery went for the same players who started the least LaLiga game, against Elche (0-0).

The match could not have started any better for Villarreal. The Yellows found the back of the net in the early moments of the game. With five minutes on the clock, Pau Torres rose higher than anyone else in the box, sending an inch-perfect Dani Parejo corner into the back of the net.

The goal gave Emery’s side a lot of confidence ,with the Yellows dominating the opening 20 minutes of the game. The best chance for the home side in the first half came later on, and came from Ruibal, whose close-range effort was saved spectacularly by Sergio Asenjo.

The only real negative of the first half was injuries to Vicente Iborra and Pervis Estupiñán, who both had to leave the pitch before the half-time interval. Francis Coquelin and Alfonso Pedraza came on for them, as Villarreal were forced into two changes. Despite that, they went into the break with a goal advantage.

After the half-time break, Betis drew level thanks to an unstoppable Ruibal rocket, with the Betis player getting on the end of a loose ball to fire it into the top corner of Asenjo’s goal.

The Yellows had even more bad luck in the 58th minute, with another player injured. Coquelin, who came on for Iborra just before half-time, had to be substituted with a muscular problem.

The closing minutes saw both sides push forward, with neither happy with a point. Despite both teams’ best wishes, neither of them were able to have a create any real goalscoring chance and score the winning goal.

Villarreal’s next match is their first Copa del Rey appearance of the season, against SD Leioa on Wednesday at 9pm CET.


Real Betis: Joel Robles; Emerson, Víctor Ruiz, Bartra, Álex Moreno (Miranda, m. 45); William Carvalho, Guido Rodríguez, Guardado (Tello, m. 45), Aitor (Joaquín, m. 82); Fekir , Borja Iglesias (Sanabria, m. 63).

Villarreal CF: S. Asenjo; Mario Gaspar, R. Albiol, Pau Torres, Estupiñán (Pedraza, m. 41); Iborra (Coquelin, m. 39, (J. Costa, m. 57)), M. Trigueros, Parejo; Take (Chukwueze, m. 57), F. Niño (Yeremy, m. 45), Gerard.

Goals: 0-1. Min. 5: Pau Torres. 1-1. Min. 50: Aitor.

Referee: Pizarro Gómez: Booked: Borja Iglesias, Guido Rodríguez (Real Betis), Fer Niño, M. Trigueros, Pedraza (Villarreal).

Matchday information: Game between Real Betis and Villarreal CF, corresponding to Matchday 13 of the 2020/21 LaLiga season at the Benito Villamarín. A minute’s silence was held in memory of Juan Gabilondo Muguerza, former Real Betis Balompié footballer, and Antonio Doblas, father of the home side’s goalkeeping coach and former Real Betis Balompié player Toni Doblas.