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Dreaming in Europe (2-0)
Dreaming in Europe (2-0)


Villarreal beats Bayer 04 Leverkusen thanks to two Cédric Bakambu goals

An unforgettable night in Europe. Two goals courtesy of Cédric Bakambu helped Villarreal take down Bayer 04 Leverkusen and give them the advantage going into the second leg of the UEFA Europa League Round of 16 that will be played next Thursday 17th March at 7pm CET in the BayArena stadium.

The Submarine came out all guns blazing, going straight for the opposition. Not even two minutes had passed when the Yellows came close to scoring as Mario put in a great cross but Soldado couldn’t convert; both his first shot saved by Leno and the rebound failing to break the deadlock.

Only a few seconds later the 1-0 arrived. Soldado put a magnificent through ball to the feet of Bakambu who fired home in front of a roaring crowd who gathered in El Madrigal tonight.

Villarreal went ahead, but didn’t stop there and kept pushing for their second goal before the break. After half time Mario flicked on the ball from a corner and a Bayer 04 Leverkusen defender almost put it into his own net.

In the 39th minute it was Castillejo who got free down the left wing and sent in a cross to Soldado at the front post, whose effort went wide yet again.

The second half started on a great note. Bakambu hunted down the rival goal on a lethal counter attack and after a spectacular 50 metre run with the ball at his feet, he struck the ball under Leno with a powerful right footed shot. Lethal.

Shortly after Kramer went down for the Germans. The Germans midfielder was struck with the ball in the face from a Rukavina clearance and had to be replaced.

The Yellows were well organized defensively and looking to counter attack. Marcelino made some subs, brining on Leo Baptistao for Soldado, next to Bakambu up front. And the number 10 had the last clear chance of the game, but his effort was saved by Leno. Villarreal keep dreaming in Europe.


Villarreal CF: Areola; Mario, Bailly, Víctor Ruiz, Rukavina; Samu Castillejo (Nahuel, m. 79), Trigueros, Bruno, Denis Suárez; Bakambu (Adrián, m. 81) and Soldado (Leo Baptistao, m. 76).

Bayer 04 Leverkusen: Leno; Jedvaj, Papadopoulos, Tah, Wendell; Brandt, Kramer (Frey, m. 62), Hakan Çalhanoglu, Bellarabi (Mehmedi, m. 85); ‘Chicharito’ Hernández and Kiessling (Kruse, m. 67).

Goals: 1-0. Min. 3: Bakambu. 2-0. Min. 55: Bakambu.

Referee: Gianluca Rocchi (Italy). Cautioned: Manu Trigueros (m. 71) for Villarreal; Tah (m. 14) and ‘Chicharito’ Hernández (m. 47) for Bayer 04 Leverkusen. Sent off: Jedvaj (m. 91) for double yellow for Bayer 04 Leverkusen.

Match Information: Match in correspondence with the UEFA Europa League Round of 16 first leg played in El Madrigal. The Villarreal players wore black arm bands in memory of the mother of the Submarine goalkeeper coach, Jesús Unanua.