Defeat at the Camp Nou
Defeat at the Camp Nou


A focused and hardworking Villarreal fall to a tremendously strong FC Barcelona side (4-1)

It wasn’t to be. They gave their all at every moment, they put FC Barcelona under pressure and managed to equalize, but the Yellows come away from the Camp Nou empty handed (4-1). A focused, hardworking and well positioned Submarine ended up falling to the sheer strength of the claret-and-blues, who scored when it mattered most. It ended in defeat for Villarreal, who must keep fighting until the end to secure a place in next season’s Europa League.

Barça took the reins from the first minute, against a Villarreal side that sat back and focused on not letting the home side through. In the opening minutes the Yellows did well to keep the locals at bay, but in the 21st minute it was Neymar who put the claret-and-blues ahead from a counterattack led by Luis Suárez.  

Villarreal reacted though. In the 31st minute, Soldado sent Bakambu on his way from the middle of the pitch with a great pass and the Congolese striker made a 50 metre run and no mistake when up against Ter Stegen one on one, firing the ball past the Barcelona goalkeeper.

Eight minutes later, and despite Barcelona’s stalking of Andrés Fernández’s goal with every play, Soriano put in a brilliant cross from the left wing and Soldado’s well placed header just missed the top corner.

Just before half time the home side took the lead once again. Messi picked up the ball on the top of the box and pulled the trigger, his shot deflecting off a Villarreal defender and sending it out of Andrés’ reach and into the bottom corner.

The game was still even at the start of the second half, following a similar script to that of the first. Barcelona continued to create chances, but Villarreal were finding it more difficult to create chances of their own. In the 64th minute, Jonathan dos Santos tried his luck from a free kick but the ball went just over Ter Stegen’s bar.

In the 68th minute, Luis Suárez made things even more difficult for Villarreal after he took advantage of a quick through ball by Rakitic. The Yellows could not get back into position quick enough and the Uruguayan made them pay: 3-1. Ten minutes from time it was Messi again who hit the back of the net, this time from the penalty spot, to make it 4-1 and secure the three points for FC Barcelona.


FC Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Sergi Roberto (Mascherano, m. 77), Piqué, Umtiti, Digne (Jordi Alba, m. 75); Rakitic (André Gomes, m. 83), Busquets, Iniesta; Messi, Luis Suárez and Neymar. 

Villarreal CF: Andrés; Mario, Jaume Costa, Musacchio, Álvaro, Rodrigo, Trigueros, Jonathan dos Santos, Roberto Soriano (Samu Castillejo, m. 71); Soldado (Sansone, m. 71) and Bakambu (Adrián, m. 83).

Goals: 1-0. Min. 21: Neymar. 1-1. Min. 31: Bakambu. 2-1. Min. 44: Messi. 3-1. Min. 68: Luis Suárez. 4-1. Min. 81: Messi, penalty.

Referee: José María Sánchez Martínez (Murcia, Spain). Cautioned: Sergi Roberto (m. 15) and Iniesta (m. 63) for FC Barcelona; Álvaro (m. 18), Soldado (m. 71), Musacchio (m. 77) and Jaume Costa (m. 81) for Villarreal.

Match Information: Match corresponding to Matchday 36 of the La Liga Santander between FC Barcelona and Villarreal CF played at the Camp Nou in front of 90,463 spectators.