5️⃣ Five things you may not know about Villarreal CF

5️⃣ Five things you may not know about Villarreal CF

Villarreal will host Barcelona in one of LaLiga's matches to keep an eye on this weekend.

The Yellow Submarines will be hoping to put behind their midweek loss to Man United in the Champions League, and will fancy their chances against the Xavi-led side.

Here are five things you may not know about the LaLiga side.

Amarillo el Submarino es…

Yes, we all know they adopted one of the best nicknames in football from the Beatles song… but did you know that it became the anthem of Estadio de la Ceramica in 1967 with the then-minnows hurtling towards promotion out of Spain’s regional leagues into the third tier?

In fact, it was a cover of the Ringo Starr-sung hit by Spanish band Los Mustang that a group of the club’s young fans started playing on a battery-powered record player in the stands that started the chant ‘Amarillo el Submarino es, Amarillo es, Amarillo es.’

It caught on quickly – the club having adopted the colour yellow in 1947 after their suppliers ran out of their then-used white and black ahead of the new football season. The son of the club’s president had to buy the only colour they had left.

Villarreal wouldn’t become a staple of LaLiga and one of Spain’s primary exports in European competition for another three decades, but now the world knows them by the nickname created by fans in Spain’s fourth tier in the 1960s.

The Yellow Brick Wall

If United are to stand a chance against their Spanish opponents after a difficult week which saw coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer fired after three years in charge, they’ll have to get past one of the most miserly defences in Europe.

Defenders like Juan Foyth – whose loan move from Tottenham Hotspur was made permanent in the summer – young Spanish star Pau Torres and last season’s penalty-scoring hero goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli make Villarreal a tough proposition; only three teams in LaLiga Santander have a stronger defensive record.

Unai the mastermind

Unai Emery will always have his name etched in Villarreal legend after masterminding the club’s Europa League success last season, but he is also building for the future at Estadio de la Ceramica.

Yeremi Pino, who last week omitted his long-term future to the club, wowed the Villarreal crowd last season while still a teenager, plus the summer capture of striker Boulaye Dia has so far proven a shrewd piece of business.

Having carved out a niche as something of a Europa League specialist – having won three titles on the trot with Sevilla before last season’s incredible victory – Emery is one of the most admired coaches in Spain. He’s also a published author, having written ‘Winning Mentality: The Emery Methodology’ in 2012.

Yeremi Pino… one to watch  

One accolade that may have gone unnoticed in Villarreal’s last triumph over Manchester United is Yeremi Pino becoming the youngest player ever to win the competition – taking the record from Robin van Persie who set it back in 2002.

Still just 18, Pino has already been playing a key role in Villarreal’s season having made 36 appearances last term – his first in the team. He is already being tipped as the of the rising stars of Spanish football, and the club have him under contract until 2027. 

His explosive pace and incredible dribbling skill are his best assets – one Manchester United will certainly have to watch out for on Tuesday.

A strong European home record

Enroute to claiming their first ever piece of silverware, Villarreal performed incredibly well at home throughout the competition, winning all seven of their games played at El Madrigal in the Europa League last season.

In this season’s Champions League, they drew their opening game with Atalanta 2-2 before easing past Young Boys with a 2-0 victory. Villarreal are not a team you like to play away from home in a pressure game, and with both teams tied at the top of the group, this as pressure a game as it gets.

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