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Patience pays off (0-1)
Patience pays off (0-1)

Villarreal get first win of the season thanks to Gerard Moreno’s goal against RCD Mallorca

Villarreal can smile. The Submarine got their first win of the season with a 0-1 victory over RCD Mallorca thanks to a goal from Gerard Moreno, who became the club’s all-time top scorer (107 goals), surpassing Adriano García. Good news all round.

The biggest novelties in Quique Setién’s XI were the Italian centre-back Matteo Gabbia and the Anglo-Chilean striker Brereton Díaz. Both made their debuts in official matches and were in the starting line-up.

The script of the game in the first half was as expected. The Submarine monopolised possession, while the Balearic side waited in wait for their chance to steal the ball and get forward quickly on the counter-attack.

The clearest chance of the first half fell to the Yellows. In the 29th minute, Brereton Díaz created a brilliant inside pass for Álex Baena, but he shot wide.

In the second half, Villarreal took the lead in the 52nd minute, but the goal was disallowed for a handball by Gerard Moreno.

The goal that did count was the one scored in the 62nd minute. Baena put the ball in, Sorloth shot and Rajkovic’s rebound was picked out by Gerard Moreno to make it 0-1 and become the all-time top scorer (107), surpassing Adriano García (106). A legend!

Raúl Albiol returns

Shortly after, another of the game’s big stories took place. Raúl Albiol returned from injury. The Submarine captain replaced Matteo Gabbia in the 66th minute.

Another new face was Ilias Akhomach, who also made his Villarreal debut in an official match after coming on in the 76th minute.

Villarreal controlled Mallorca’s attacks, trying not to lose possession of the ball. Setién’s team was looking to ‘sleep’ the game to get their first three points of the season. However, without giving up the attack. In fact, Capoue had a very clear chance to score the 0-2. Rajkovic prevented it in stoppage time.

The match ended 0-1. The first victory of the 2023/24 LALIGA EA Sports season. The Submarine’s next match will be against FC Barcelona at the Estadio de la Cerámica on Sunday 27th August (5:30pm CEST).


RCD Mallorca: Rajkovic; Maffeo, Valjent, Raíllo (G. González, m. 44), Copete, Jaume Costa; Dani Rodríguez (Larin, m. 63), Mascarell (Javi Llabrés, m. 72), Morlanes (Samu Costa, m. 46), Amath (Darder, m. 46); Muriqi.

Villarreal CF: Jorgensen; Foyth, Gabbia (R. Albiol, m. 66), J. Cuenca, A. Pedraza; R. Terrats (Capoue, m. 67), Parejo, Álex B. (Santi C. V., m. 76); Gerard (Denis Suárez, m. 76), Sorloth, Brereton Díaz (I. Akhomach, m. 76).

Goal: 0-1. Min. 62: Gerard.

Referee: Alberola Rojas. Booked: Mascarell, Valjent (RCD Mallorca); Brereton Díaz, R. Terrats, Álex B., Santi C. V. (Villarreal CF).

Matchday information: Game corresponding to Matchweek 2 of the 2023/24 LALIGA EA SPORTS season at the Estadi Mallorca Son Moix. Attendance: 17,775.