A valiant display (5-0)
A valiant display (5-0)

Villarreal beat Rapid Vienna in style, going joint-top of the group

Villarreal put on a show and went all out against Austrian side SK Rapid Vienna (5-0) in what was an excellent performance at home by the Yellows. The Submarine’s goals were scored by Pablo Fornals, Karl Toko Ekambi (2), Dani Raba and Gerard Moreno. This victory propels Javi Calleja’s side to the top spot in Group G of the UEFA Europa League with three games still left to play. The result equals Villarreal’s biggest win in the history of the UEFA Europa League (6-1 against NAC Breda in the 2009/10 season).

Calleja, well aware of the demanding schedule, made six changes to the starting eleven that drew against Atlético Madrid last weekend. The Submarine dominated the match from the first minute creating plenty of goal scoring opportunities. Toko Ekambi was the most active player in the Yellows front line. The No.17’s speed and runs caused a lot of problems for the Austrian defence. Before the first goal of the game, Toko Ekambi almost scored on three separate occasions. All of which were very clear chances on goal.

The reward for persistence came in the 25th minute. Toko Ekambi got away from the pressure from the Austrian goalkeeper Richard Strebinger and crossed the ball to Fornals who volleyed the ball into the back of the net (1-0). The goal led to a siege from the Yellows. Villarreal were full of momentum and it was just a question of time until they made it 2-0.

It came from Toko Ekambi. The French-Cameroonian striker left two opposing defenders trailing after a magical cutback and scored with a powerful effort at the near post. Unstoppable (2-0).

The third Yellows goal came just before half-time. Miguelón crossed in from the right and Toko Ekambi found the back of the net with a diving header (3-0, m.44).

The show from the Mini Submarine continued after the break. The Yellows passed the ball quickly and continuously pulled the Rapid defence apart. The goal to make it 4-0 was a work of arte, a great piece of team play. Jaume Costa got down the left flank, played it across and Toko Ekambi flicked it back with a subtle touch ahead of an arriving Raba. The No.22 didn’t miss.

The only negative of the match was Costa being sent off for a two yellow cards. The left-back did not end the pitch because of a supposed dive at the edge of the box (m.79).

Despite having a man left, Villarreal carried on being on top. The 5-0 put the icing on the cake after a great match. Youngster Samu Chukwueze broke down the left and cut the ball back for Gerard Moreno, with the Catalan striker finding the empty net after taking it past the goalkeeper.

In the other match in Group G, Rangers and Spartak played out a goalless draw. The next match for Villarreal in the UEFA Europa League will be against SK Rapid Vienna (Thursday, 8th November).


Villarreal CF: Andrés Fernández; M. Llambrich, Álvaro, Funes Mori, Jaume Costa; Cáseres (Cazorla, m. 77), Trigueros; Layún, Fornals (Chukwueze, m. 63), Raba (Gerard, m. 69); Toko Ekambi.

SK Rapid Vienna: Strebinger; Müldür, Sonnleitner, Barac, Bolingoli; Ljubicic, Potzmann (Ivan, m. 46), Murg (Knasmüllner, m. 77), Schwab, Berisha (Thurnwald, m. 59); Alar.

Goals: 1-0. Min. 25: Fornals. 2-0. Min. 30: Toko Ekambi. 3-0. Min. 44: Toko Ekambi. 4-0. Min. 62: Raba. 5-0. Min. 85: Gerard.

Referee: Halis Özkahya (TUR). Booked: Trigueros, Cáseres (Villarreal); Murg (Rapid Vienna). Sent off: Costa (Villarreal).

Matchday information: Partido Match corresponding to Matchday 3 of the Group Stage of the UEFA Europa League played in the Estadio de la Cerámica in front of an attendance of 14,558.