Two assassins in front of goal gave Villarreal three points. The Yellows beat Deportivo Alavés at the Estadio de la Cerámica thanks to goals from poacher Paco Alcácer (2) and Gerard Moreno. The Basque side’s goal came from Edgar. This win gives the Submarine seven points from a possible 12, and moves them towards the top end of the table.
Unai Emery changed his system from the first three games of the season, lining up with a 4-3-3 where Manu Trigueros, Vicente Iborra and Dani Parejo were in the engine room of the team. Ahead of them, there were three attacking players in Moi Gómez, Gerard and Alcácer.
The Submarine started the match well, with more posession than their opponents and creating danger. In the 11th minute, a great pass from Moi to Alcácer was close to being a goal. The opener came soon after though. Mario Gaspar escaped down the right after a great Parejo ball, and played in a low cross, which Alcácer subtly sent into the back of the net.
The equaliser was an accident. Deyverson played a long ball, Sergio Asenjo misjudged the bounce and the ball went over him. Edgar was alert and made it 1-1 (m.36).
The goal to make it 2-1 was full of suspense. Mario Gaspar was brought down in the box by Florian Lejeune, and the referee needed to check with VAR to point to the spot. Gerard stepped up, sending the keeper the wrong way just before the break. It was an important goal psychologically.
The second half started with another great chance for the Yellows. Both Pervis Estupiñán and Alcácer shot, but were denied by the Alavés defence on the line.
It was Alcácer who made it 3-1. In the 66th minute, Moi played a great ball over the top for Gerard, who lobbed the keeper, but hit the post. Alcácer could smell the goal though, and made the most of the rebound.
There was a piece of bad news for the Yellows late on though, as Estupinán picked up an injury. The left-back had to leave the pitch after a heavy challenge.
Next up for Villarreal CF is a game this Saturday against Atlético Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano (4pm CEST).
Villarreal CF: Asenjo; Mario Gaspar, Albiol, Pau, Estupiñán (Jaume Costa, m. 76); Iborra, Trigueros (Take, m. 74); Gerard (Bacca, m. 82), Parejo, Moi Gómez (Chukwueze, m. 82) Paco Alcácer (Funes Mori, m. 83).
Deportivo Alavés: Pacheco; Ximo Navarro, Laguardia (Rodrigo Ely, m. 82), Lejeune, Rubén Duarte (Manu, m. 75); Edgar (Sergi, m. 75), Battaglia, Pere Pons, Borja Sainz (Rioja, m. 65); Deyverson (Guidetti, m. 65), Lucas Pérez.
Goals: 1-0. Min. 12: Paco Alcácer. 1-1. Min. 36: Edgar. 2-1. Min. 44: Gerard, de penalti. 3-1. Min. 66: Paco Alcácer.
Referee: Medié Jiménez. Booked: Laguardia, Ximo Navarro (Alavés).
Matchday information: Match corresponding to LaLiga Matchday 4 at the Estadio de la Cerámica.