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Emery: “The team worked hard”

21 / 02 / 2021

The Villarreal head coach underlined his team's hard work against Athletic

Villarreal CF head coach Unai Emery underlined that his men dug deep to draw against Athletic Club at San Mamés (1-1). The Yellows came into the match on the back of a game in Austria on Thursday, and we up against a team in good form. "The draws mean we are getting fewer points than we would want, but drawing with Athletic Club at San Mamés is something that you could consider as a good thing. You have to look at the positives. The team competed well and worked hard. Their goal affected us a bit and in the second half they had more chances. In the last ten minutes, we were more direct. We need to continue working on our ideas," said Emery.

For Emery, the Basque team's goal was important in affecting how the game turned out: "We played with personality and we were doing well until the goal that made it 1-1. Athletic were able to find some more spaces and create more chances, but Sergio played well. We lacked changing the rhythm to try and unbalance the tie. We were arriving in the final third well, but we were not creating danger. In the second half, we had less control because we lacked freshness in our legs. We went for the second goal in the last ten minutes. We had chances and opportunities to score."

To conclude, Emery underlined his optimism ahead of the UEFA Europa League Round of 32 second leg against FC Salzburg this coming Thursday at the Estadio de la Cerámica (6:550pm CET): "We're going to try and give continuity to the 0-2 results we got in Austria. We respect the opponents a lot, and we know it's a tough tie. We need to perform well to get into the next round. The Europa League excites us. We want to have a nice journey in it."

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