Is it possible that Villarreal could actually manage to choke away their UEFA Champions League spot? They look like they're trying very hard to do it, as they're down 2-0 at halftime against Sevilla. After their 1-0 win against Real Zaragoza last week, it looked like Villarreal might be back on the right track, but what has gone on so far this afternoon suggests that they never really recovered from that 5-0 beating they took from Valencia.
The first goal was scored by January signing Ivan Rakitic on a fantastic free kick. Mateo Musacchio was shown a yellow card for committing a bad foul on Didier Zokora in the 7th minute, and on the ensuing free kick, Rakitic completely fooled Diego Lopez as the ball curled into the net. It was Rakitic's fifth goal in La Liga, and he's proven to be an incredible bargain signing so far.
Alvaro Negredo quickly doubled Sevilla's tally, scoring a great close-range chipped finish over Lopez after running into a fantastic through ball from Diego Perotti. Villarreal's defense was unbelievably slow on the sequence, as they were easily left in the dust by Negredo, despite the fact that he was calling for the ball five seconds before Perotti actually delivered it.
Villarreal's forward tandem of Marco Ruben and Nilmar has been very ineffective, and Giuseppe Rossi will probably be making an appearance off the bench in the second half, sooner rather than later. However, based on the Yellow Submarine's first half performance, he's unlikely to change his team's fortunes on his own.