Valencia vs Villareal - Battle For Third Place

Valencia vs Villareal
Spanish La Liga
Mestalla, Valencia
Sunday, 10th April 2011
19:00 GMT (21:00 CET)

Valencia replaced Villarreal in third spot and built a three-point advantage last weekend after a 4-2 victory over Getafe while the Yellow Submarine lost 1-0 at home to Barcelona, and Los Che could effectively increase that gap to six points with a victory over Villareal. Valencia would also then boast the better head-to-head record against Villarreal this season having drawn 1-1 at El Madrigal, and that would be decisive if the teams should finish level on points.

However, with only seven games remaining after this weekend - and the fact that Villareal are fighting to win the Europa League - it would take a huge effort for them just to claw back six points if they lose. Villarreal defender Carlos Marchena, who moved from Valencia last summer said, "Both teams are playing for a lot because third place is there. Valencia only have a three-point advantage and if we have a good game we will be right there with them."

Villarreal go into the match in buoyant mood after putting their Barca defeat behind them with a hugely impressive 5-1 victory over Dutch league leaders FC Twente in the first leg of their Europa League quarter-final on Thursday. Marchena also added, "We`re going to arrive a little tired, but very motivated after the big win against Twente. One thing could cancel out the other and we hope it`s the positive aspect that comes through."

It was not all good news on Thursday for Juan Carlos Garrido`s men. as they lost captain Gonzalo Rodriguez with a broken leg and set to be sidelined for up to four months. Also missing for the game due to injuries are Marcos Senna, Cani and Angel Lopez.

Valencia, who were knocked out of the Copa del Rey by Villarreal this season, put a run of four defeats in five competitive games behind them with their victory over Getafe - a match in which Valencia striker Roberto Soldado scored all four goals for his side. "I hope I`ve still got some goals left for Sunday`s game. Neither side will settle for a draw and we will both be going out to win," said Soldado."

Valencia boss Unai Emery has named a 19-man squad for the encounter, with Joaquin Sanchez, Miguel and Vicente Guaita all returning. David Navarro and David Albelda are still unavailable.

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