La Liga Match Preview: Villarreal vs. Osasuna

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Updated: January 28, 2014
Villarreal

Match Date: 03 February 2014 (local)

Match Venue: Estadio El Madrigal

 

Villarreal

In-form Villarreal became a life vest for struggling Real Valladolid when these teams competed on weekend, with the latter picking up the three points to send them almost out of the fatal relegation zone (18th). Villarreal, meanwhile, incurred their sixth defeat this season but their very strong showings in their previous fixtures ensured that they are still in the table’s top five and their hope for a Champions League place has not yet been ruled out.

 

The opening half at Estadio Nuevo Jose Zorrilla put the thrill and scoring chances at bay, although Oscar almost gave the home side an opener after 13 minutes via a close-range strike but only to fire it over the crossbar. Javier Aquino’s careless challenge on Carlos Pena awarded the home side with a free-kick. Fausto Rossi then took charge of the set-piece for Rueda, who produced a header into the bottom right corner, thus delivering the match’s first (and later on, the only) goal of the meeting.

 

Osasuna

Osasuna’s ascent above the relegation zone is one of the most inspiring stories in the current top-flight season. However, not all fairy tales have to end in absolute happiness. In the sides’ most recent La Liga fixture, they obtained an upset that clearly demonstrated how much effort they have yet to exert to fully make them a powerhouse in the Spanish top-tier football.

 

Athletic Bilbao vaunted their Champions League credentials by firing five goals against Osasuna’s one. Susaeta opened the scoring early on for Bilbao, but Armenteros later put his team level. Beyond the 16th minute, the visitors have been in total control of the match, striking four more goals (including two from Aduriz) up to the finish.

 

Los Rojillos are still 11 points clear of the table’s foot, but they need tremendous strength to further widen their gap with the relegation clubs and push themselves up at least into the middle of the rankings.

 

Online betting tip: Facing players who are as powerful as their previous opponents, Osasuna will have a difficult time finishing their next battle at least in a draw. Villarreal have almost every reason to claim victory from this tourney.

 

Villarreal | Image source: Yahoo! Sport