11/11/2018 | News release | Distributed by Public on 11/11/2018 15:20
Villarreal clinched a point away from home against Rayo Vallecano (2-2) in a match that saw the Yellows have enough chances to have been able to get the win.
Yellows boss Javi Calleja was brave in his choice of starting lineup. He opted for a 4-4-2, speed being a key factor in his game plan with the inclusion of Samu Chukwueze and Toko Ekambi. The French-Cameroonian striker was very dangerous in the first half. Despite playing up front, Ekambi found a way to exploit Rayo's defence down the left flank and in the first half an hour had three chances on goal.
Taking advantage of Toko Ekambi's success getting forward down the left wing, Villarreal opted to attack down the flanks and ended up surprising the locals from the right side. In the 32nd minute, a sublime long ball by Funes Mori was brought down expertly by Samu Chukwueze, who brilliantly made two cuts inside and sent a driven strike into the back of the net (0-1). The Nigerian winger opened the scoring for Villarreal.
Five minutes later, Gerard Moreno had two good chances, but was without luck as he went up against Dimitrievski.
When it seemed as though the first half was over, Rayo Vallecano equalised in the last gasp before the break. With time almost up, De Tomás found a gap in the Yellows back line and passed the ball into the back of the net from a cross in by Trejo (1-1).
In the second half, the Yellows battled to retake the lead after the psychological blow from the home side's goal before the break. After possession alternated between the two sides early on, in the 65th minute Raúl de Tomás hit a powerful strike from 30 metres out that was stopped by Sergio Asenjo. Nevertheless, the rebound fell to Rayo's Álvaro García, who netted from point-blank range to give the locals the lead (2-1).
Luck was not on Villarreal's side once again. In the 76th minute, the referee called offside on a Funes Mori free kick. Far from giving up, the Yellow Submarine kept pushing forward in search of the equaliser. Ten minutes from time, Sansone finally got it with a fantastic goal. Starting on the left wing, the Italian forward got away from his defender, took the ball inside and made no mistake with his magic right foot (2-2).
In the 83rd minute, González González disallowed another Submarine goal. Great combination play between Trigueros and Sansone set up Toko Ekambi, whose goal was ruled offside due to the Italian striker's positioning.
In the final minutes, Rayo Vallecano made the most of being the locals, pushing Villarreal back into their own half and making them rely on Sergio Asenjo. In the 89th minute, the Spanish international goalkeeper saved a blistering strike from Ba. What's more, in added time, the Submarine were left with ten men after Álvaro González was sent off for receiving two yellow cards.
Rayo Vallecano: Dimitrievski; Advíncula, Ba, Jordi Amat, Álex Moreno; Comesaña, Embarba (Bebé, m. 83), Trejo (Álvaro García, m. 63), Imbula (Elustondo, m. 73), Pozo; and De Tomás.
Villarreal CF: Asenjo; Miguelón, Álvaro, Funes Mori, Jaume Costa (Sansone, m. 72); Chukwueze, Trigueros, Cáseres, Fornals (Cazorla, m. 80); Toko Ekambi and Gerard (Pedraza, m. 58).
Goals: 0-1. Min. 32: Chukwueze. 1-1. Min 45. De Tomás. 2-1. Min 65: Álvaro García. 2-2. Min. 80: Sansone.
Referee: González González. Sent off: Álvaro González (92'). Booked: Amat for Rayo Vallecano and Trigueros for Villarreal.
Match Information: Match corresponding to Matchday 12 of the LaLiga Santander between Rayo Vallecano and Villarreal CF played at the Estadio de Vallecas in front of 11,840 spectators.