Villarreal vs Maccabi Tel Aviv by Jimeno
Villarreal didn't react that well in previous game of Primera, as the side suffered 3:1 defeat away to Leganes on Sunday afternoon. However, must be said that they actually looked better in the first halftime and till the moment they took the lead - in 60th minute with a goal from Raba.
However, from that moment the players of Leganes stepped up and looked much more active and threatening on the field - reverting the scoreline completely and taking all three points in last twenty minutes of the game - thanks to goal from Rico, El Zhar and Gabriel finally. This was second consecutive defeat in the Spanish league, as the side now stands at sixth position having already seven points less than fifth placed Sevilla.
Villarreal is set to play in 4-3-2-1 formation most likely, with Bakambu as their central striker. Offensive midfielders should be Fornals and Soriano. They are playing against Barcelona on Sunday evening and some rotation is expected here. Carlos Bacca shouldn't be risked here still not being fully fit, while injured remain offensive midfielders Nicola Sansone, Denis Cheryshev, Samu Castillejo and central back Ruben Semedo.
Maccabi Tel Aviv, on the other side, comes from just a point taken in a home game against Moadon Sport Ashdod in a 1:1 draw, obviously being far away from their best possible form. It was anything but a positive result, since the players of Maccabi were set as huge favorites before the clash.
Still, the visitors took the lead in 31st minute with a goal from Mauricio and all the hosts managed to do was to level up in 45th via Blackman, however without changing the scoreline completely. The team now stands at fourth position at the table, having five points less than leading duo from Hapoel Haifa and Hapoel Beer Sheva, surely switching their attention to domestic duties only since they lost the mathematical chances to progress further in Europe, but for the moment it's not going in their favor.
Visitors should be playing in 4-5-1 formation with Kjartansson as only forward. Forward Omer Atzili is injured, while the Israeli side is already eliminated and that could influence on their starting eleven.
- Villarreal have scored at least 2 goals in their last 3 matches (UEFA Europa League).
- Maccabi Tel Aviv have failed to score in their last 5 matches (UEFA Europa League).
Even though the home team will be playing with a bit changed squad here, I have no doubts that they will try to be as offensive as possible and will seek for a victory that would improve their current morale brought down with three matches without a victory in LaLiga. Israeli side showed close to nothing in attack during first five rounds and shouldn't represent a real obstacle for the Spaniards.