Austria Vienna 0-1 Villarreal
Unai Emery draws criticism from various sectors of Spanish football but one thing that cannot be faulted is his record in Europe. The Yellow Submarine travelled to face Austria Vienna on Thursday night and came back qualified for the next round of the Europa Conference League with two games to spare.
It was not as easy as Emery might have liked. After being beaten comfortably last week, Austria Vienna were keen to ensure they kept things tight and a sturdy defensive set up kept them in the game. Despite having two thirds of possession, Villarreal were reduced to a few speculative shots.
In the second half the same game played out as Austria Vienna nearly took the lead. Only a Pepe Reina save prevented Can Keles from doing so.
Despite their continued dominance of the ball, Villarreal had less shots than their hosts. It was only a piece of brilliance from Jose Luis Morales, once again a substitute, who provided a back-heel assist for Nicolas Jackson to grab the winner three minutes from time.
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It keeps Villarreal top of the group and already qualified with two games to spare. Emery’s side will potentially be confirmed top of the group, if Lech Poznan cannot beat Hapoel Beer Sheva.