Villarreal CF - Athletic Club
Matchday 12

Villarreal CF - Athletic Club

Villarreal CF
Villarreal CF
Athletic Club
Athletic Club
  • 86' Gerard
  • 87' Sørloth
  • R. de Galarreta 2'
  • N. Williams 22'
  • Williams 30'

LocationEstadio de la Cerámica , Vila-real

18.709 assistants

Athletic light up La Cerámica

Despite a nervy end, three goals in the first half hour see the Lions pick up an important win in Castellón

Athletic Club produced a convincing performance to defeat Villarreal 2-3 at La Cerámica on Sunday evening.

Three goals in the first half hour from Iñigo Ruiz de Galarreta and the Williams brothers put the game beyond doubt, although Gerard Moreno and Alexander Sorloth made it difficult with strikes in the last five minutes. 

Ernesto Valverde's side see out the weekend fifth in the standings and have a chance to kick on against RC Celta next Friday, in what will be a tense match due to Celta's current struggles.

Los Leones will have learned several lessons from today's visit to a ground where games can seem to go on forever. The first is that they have the attacking play and the firepower to dream of Europe. And the second, that you can't lose sight of the match... even when you are 0-3 up.

The evening started with a superb goal from Ruiz de Galarreta, his first as a Lion 12 years after his debut and a journey which saw him leave Bilbao and then return.

Teed up by Nico Williams, the midfielder took a deft touch before thundering an effort into the top right corner. With barely 90 seconds on the clock, Athletic couldn't have asked for a better start.

Sorloth threatened in the 17th minute, but Athletic responded with a perfect move between Nico and Oihan Sancet five minutes later. A quick one-two saw the winger bag his first goal of the season.

It produced a big smile from his mother in the crowd. Our 125th anniversary ambassador for June had even more reasons to smile seven minutes later when her eldest son, Iñaki Williams, found the back of the net with a stunning curling effort from the edge of the box.

The game belonged to the lads in blue - Athletic donning their new special edition 125th anniversary kit - but Pacheta's Villarreal have the weapons to do significant damage, and they made sure Los Leones did not forget that. Unai Simón and Aitor Paredes were both needed to deny the hosts before half-time

After the restart, Sorloth tested Simón again and Alex Baena hit the post. Villarreal were not at 100 percent, but they made sure Athletic felt their punching power.

Sancet had a left-footed effort which went wide and just when everything seemed to be on track, the Yellows netted two goals in quick succession to give themselves a glimmer of hope at the end.

Villarreal may well be in a rough patch, but winning at this stadium is never easy and Athletic had to dig deep for a deserved win.