Villarreal boosted by Bruno Soriano’s first goal in 129 games


Bruno Soriano gave Villarreal a timely boost as his first goal in 129 starts for the Yellow Submarine put Juan Carlos Garrido’s men on the road to a 2-0 victory over Rayo Vallecano that lifted them out of the relegation zone.

Borja Valero sealed the points on 66 minutes to record Villarreal’s second league win of the campaign and Bruno could not hide his joy afterwards: “I am very proud to have scored my first goal in La Primera and in this case it was worth it because it’s better late than never,” enthused the 27-year-old. “The goal is important to me, but more so the three points that gets this team back on track. I think we all knew the circumstance coming into this game, with the different injuries suffered, but we went for it no matter what.”

The loss of Giuseppe Rossi during the week with a cruciate ligament injury – which will keep him sidelined for up to six months – along with Nilmar’s injury and a spate of other absentees has left Garrido’s team reeling, and Bruno added: “It’s a shame because besides the loss of these two there is also Cani, Marco, Javi and Senna, and to be honest we can’t believe the bad luck we have had. But we have managed to overcome it and achieve the victory we have been so desperate for.”

For his part, boss Garrido could not hide his satisfaction with the win after being under pressure for much of the week, with talk he could even have been dismissed if the result against Rayo did not go in his side’s favour. While lamenting the bad run of injuries, he maintained: “Winning is important for everybody because it gives us strength and is what we needed, but I also think we deserved it. Obviously we are happy to have won but we had injury problems again. Some of our important players are not fully fit or are at least not playing at 100%.”

Referring to the future he continued: “Some football pundits will analyse us and realise that we are not doing well at the moment. But we will do better and this is a team that is going to improve a lot.”

Villarreal’s Colombian defender Cristian Zapata was full of praise for his teammates: “At the moment we are going through a lot to try and get the results we want. Against Rayo the whole team ran and fought to keep a clean sheet and that was the key to our victory.”

Garrido also received support from his opposite number, Rayo boss Jos

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