On Thursday night, Villarreal host Valencia at the Estadio de la Ceramica in the first leg of the quarter-finals of the Europa League.
Villarreal are enduring a nightmare campaign and are in La Liga’s relegation zone. The Yellow Submarine’s run to the Europa League quarter-finals has definitely been the high point of their campaign so far this season.
Despite their poor La Liga form, Villarreal are unbeaten in ten games in the Europa League, having recorded five wins and five draws. In the last round, the home side recorded an impressive 5-2 aggregate win over Russian team Zenit.
However, despite their last two European games being goal-filled, Villarreal’s previous five matches had all produced under 2.5 goals.
The Yellow Submarine are five games unbeaten on home soil in the Europa League. Javi Calleja’s side has also been prolific at home in Europe of late, scoring at least two goals in four of their last five matches on home soil.
Valencia’s form has improved to the point that Los Ches are now in contention for a Champions League spot in La Liga. The visitor’s recent form in the Europa League has not been bad either, as they are unbeaten in five games, having recorded four wins in the process. In the round of 16, Marcelino’s team eliminated Russia team Krasnodar 3-2 on aggregate.
Los Ches have a poor recent away record in the Europa League, winning just two of their last six matches on their travels while suffering three defeats in the process. Their recent away games in the Europa League have been low scoring, with four of their last five games producing under 2.5 goals, including their last three outings.
GoBonus predicts that the visitors will record a victory in a high scoring encounter to take into the second leg.