Winning start for Villarreal bodes well for season

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From La Liga runners-up to relegation in five seasons, it’s certainly been a turbulent few years for Villarreal.

They are back in the big league now however and capped off their return by scoring twice in the final six minutes for a 3-2 win away at Almeria.

Valencia, Atletico Madrid and Sevilla have all lost big players this summer, and the usual contenders for ‘best of the rest’ behind Barcelona and Real Madrid are significantly weaker than they were last season.

The two Spanish giants have bolstered their ranks in the off-season, with Barcelona snapping up Neymar, and Real purchasing Isco from Malaga, leaving the other 18 sides further off the pace than ever.

All this is good news for Villarreal, who are evens to maintain their winning start and beat Real Vallodolid this weekend.

They boast a tidy little squad under Marcelino Garcia Toral and club captain Bruno Soriano has been with the side long enough to remember those Champions League nights.

The centre mid man has also shown enough ability to warrant four international caps since 2010, during arguably the most competitive and talented era of Spanish midfielders.

Winger Hernan Perez has almost 20 international appearances to his name for Paraguay while centre-back Mateo Musacchio has featured over 100 times for Villarreal in addition to a pair of caps for Argentina, despite not yet turning 23 years of age.

El Submarino Amarillo have been smart in the transfer window too, snapping up experienced Slovenian Bojan Jokic from Chievo.

The club also brought in Giovanni dos Santos from Mallorca, and despite difficult times at Barcelona and Tottenham, the Mexican got off to a flying start with a debut goal in that Almeria victory.

Many sides are starting this season on the back foot, but Villarreal aren’t one of them, and there’s plenty to suggest they can feature in the right half of the table this season.

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Richard Marsh

Richard loves his sport, especially if it involves the sound of tyres screaming around a race track. He's not fussy though and his '90s Premier League nostalgia and knowledge of team nicknames is tough to match.