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The same goal: to be a success in yellow
The same goal: to be a success in yellow

Alexander Sorloth, Matteo Gabbia and Ilias Akhomach have been officially presented as Villarreal CF players

Villarreal CF president Fernando Roig welcomed Alexander Sorloth, Matteo Gabbia and Ilias Akhomach as new Submarine players at a ceremony held at the facilities of PAMESA Cerámica, the club’s main sponsor.

Fernando Roig on the three signings:

For the Villarreal CF president, the three players can bring a lot to the team: “Sorloth is a powerful striker, he knows LaLiga because he has played for Real Sociedad and has scored 24 goals. Gabbia is an Italian defender on loan from Milan. He can play as a centre-back and also at full-back. He is very excited to come here and to be able to have a great season. And Ilias is a very young player, international with the Spanish national team. Hispano-Moroccan and with a lot of quality and personality. He will be registered with the B team and has a great future ahead of him.”

“I will give my all for this club”

For his part, young attacker Ilias Akhomach made clear his enthusiasm to succeed in yellow: “I am very grateful to be here. I am grateful for the trust that Villarreal have placed in me. I’m going to give 100 per cent in every opportunity I get to play both in the reserve team and in the first team. Wherever I play, I’m going to go all out for this club. It’s a fantastic opportunity for me. It’s a great one. I want to show that I’m here because of who I am as a player and to be able to help the team as much as possible.”

Ilias is ambitious for the future: “I think I have great potential. I have to strengthen it by relying on my team-mates, who are very experienced and are all great professionals. I am versatile. I can play in the middle of the pitch as a No.10, as a winger or as a false nine. With my ability, I’m a player who is unbalanced and with vision in the final pass and I can help the team with my qualities in the final third.”

However, the Yellows No.27 knows that he will have to take it one step at a time: “I will try to help the team in the best way possible. I’ll try to learn from the great players here. I’m here for a reason and I want to show that I have the potential to be part of Villarreal CF. Playing in the top flight is not easy. You have to work hard in every training session and in every opportunity we are given in the matches. Every training session will be a learning experience.”

Gabbia: “Villarreal is an important and ambitious club”.

Young Italian defender Matteo Gabbia arrives on loan from Milan. “I am happy and I thank the club for their trust. It is a very important and ambitious club. It has encouraged me to come here. It is a competitive club with many top level players. I will try to do my best, to give my best both in matches and in training,” he said.

The new Yellos No.2 received advice from former Villarreal player Daniele Bonera: “I have spoken to Bonera. He has given me very good advice. He knows Villarreal and its environment very well. I heard that Villarreal were interested in me and I asked him about the club. He has told me great things about the club. He has been a great player here and now it’s up to me to do well at Villarreal.”

As for the way they play, Gabbia believes he will adapt well to Quique Setién’s concepts: “LaLiga and Serie A are two different competitions, but the game is the same and so is their philosophy. We want to win games. I’m grateful to the head coach because he’s helping me a lot. We are trying to improve aspects that he considers important and in Italy they don’t work as much. I’m very happy with the training methods here in Spain.”

Gabbia is a versatile defender who can play in all four positions at the back. “I feel comfortable in both centre-back positions. I’m right-footed and centre-back is my ideal position, but I’ve also played as a left centre-back. I don’t have any problems. I feel good in both positions. I have to work a bit harder in other positions where I don’t feel so comfortable, but I’m confident,” he said.

Sorloth: “I’m in the peak of my career and I want to make the most of it”

Alexander Sorloth arrives at Villarreal ready to be a key player in the Yellows’ attack. “I want to thank the club and the president for their confidence in me. It was an important choice for me. I wanted security and I will find it here. It was a great joy to come to Villarreal CF. They play well, they are attacking and want to score a lot of goals. It’s a perfect team for a striker. I’m in the best moment of my career. I wanted to come to a club where I could give my best and where it was a good place to live.”

The Yellows No.11 sees it as key to team up perfectly with his new teammates: “I’m a tall, big and fast striker. I can help the team if they give me the ball, I can hold it up. I like to run into space and cause danger. I can attack in various ways. The most important thing for me is to score goals. That is my goal this season. I have played for many clubs. I know what a striker has to do and that is to score a lot of goals. When Villarreal contacted me, I really wanted to come here. It’s a place to stay for many years. I want to score more goals than last season. I want to do better and score more goals, although the most important thing is to help the team. There are other ways to help: with work and assists. I will try to do it in every possible way.”

Finally, Sorloth set out the way forward this season: “We are in three competitions and we have ambition. We have a good team and I would like to get into the Champions League. In the Europa League, we also want to have a great year and go far in this competition.”