Villarreal 1 - Fiorentina 1

Villarreal: Diego López; Ángel, Fuentes, Godin, Capdevila; Cani (Nihat 60'), Josico (Cazorla 60'), Senna, Matías Fernández; Rossi, Tomasson (Pires 78'). 4-4-2.
Fiorentina: Frey; Ujfalusi, Dainelli, Kroldrup, Bazaretti; Pazienzia, Kuzmanovic (Donadel 73'), Liverani; Mutu, Jorgensen (Van den Borre 56'); Vieri (Osvaldo 65'). 4-3-2-1.

0-1. 49. Vieri. Got on the end of Mutu's cross to turn ball past Diego López.
1-1. 85. Capdevila. Steered header wide of Frey from Rossi's wide free kick.

A fair result for Villarreal in their first game of the league stage, opening their account with a 1-1 draw against one of the group favourites Fiorentina, who had not lost a game since April. Pellegrini's side were pinned back early on, with Diego López doing well to save from Mutu and Liverani, and Jorgensen going wide. Frey had to punch out a Toasson header in Villarreal's first attack, but the Italians were unlucky to have a strike by Vieri ruled out for a borderline offside by the French referee, Stefane Lannoy.

Four minutes in to the second half the visitors did get the goal they were looking for Vieri turning Mutu's cross past López. And it could have been worse had the referee not disallowed another possible goal from Mutu, again for what appeared to be an incorrect offside decision. Pellegrini brought on his best men as the Italians pulled back typically to defend, but it looked as if it was a lost cause until Capdevila finally got above the defence to head Rossi's long free kick wide of Frey for the equaliser. Hopefully it will only get easier from now on.