Villarreal qualify for Europe with final day win over

Ferran Torres of FC Barcelona runs with the ball during the LaLiga Santander match between FC Barcelona and Villarreal CF at Camp Nou on May 22, 2022 in Barcelona, Spain. 

Villarreal will play in Europe again next season after a final day win over Barcelona.

Unai Emery’s men went into the final weekend knowing they needed to match or better Athletic Club’s result to qualify for next season’s Europa Conference League.

The Yellow Submarine have managed to claim European success over the last two seasons, winning the Europa League before reaching the Champions League semi-finals this season.

But they will now enter the Conference League for the first time having finished seventh in the La Liga table.

Emery’s men had to endure some heavy pressure from Barcelona, but they claimed the three points they needed at Camp Nou.

The opener came in the 41st minute when a fine ball from Dani Parejo found Alfonso Pedraza down the left-hand side of the box.

The in-form full-back made no mistake, slotting home in a one-on-one with Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

The second came 10 minutes after the break, when Barca star Adama Traore committed a costly error.

Traore cut the ball back across his own box to find Moi Gomez, who smashed the ball home from close range.

Villarreal defended well to see out the win, and that’s that for the campaign. All in all, it’s been a pretty rewarding one.

The La Liga campaign has been pretty disappointing again, but with a Champions League semi-final, which has proved hugely rewarding financially, club chiefs will be happy.

Next season will see the Yellows compete in the Conference League and, hopefully, there will be a switch of emphasis to ensure more importance placed on La Liga to put together a stronger run at a top four finish.


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