First Division - Day 5

Racing Santander 0 - Villarreal 2

Racing: Ricardo; Coromina, Moratón, Juanma, Neru; Nafti, Diego Mateo; Morán, Benayoun (Jonathan 72'), Regueiro (Matabuena 65'); Javi Guerrero (Bodipo 72'). 4-3-2-1.
Villarreal: Reina; Quique Alvarez, Coloccini (Guayre 77'), Ballesteros, Arruabarrena; Belletti, Pedro Martí, Riquelme, Calleja (Roger 46'); José Marí, Víctor (Sonny Anderson 58'). 4-4-2.

Team changes: Racing: No change / Villarreal: Quique Alvarez, Calleja for Javi Venta, Roger.

0-1. 68. Anderson. Picked up loose ball close to goal and fired into net unmarked.
0-2. 86. Riquelme. Collected cross from Anderson and shot low past keeper.

Villarreal extended their unbeaten run in all competitions this season to 12 games after beating Racing Santander in the Sardinero stadium. They can think themselves lucky though that the Cantabrians were unable to covert an early penalty after Quique Alvarez was ruled by referee González Vázquez to have fouled Javi Guerrero in the area, Reina diving to his right to push away Guerrero's spot kick. For the rest of the first half chances were thin on the ground, and only a shot from Morán caused any problems for either keeper. But just before half time the locals were left with ten men after Diego Mateo was sent off for a hard tackle on a Villarreal midfielder.

It could have been worse though, as González let Moratón off a red card almost immediately after the restart for another hard tackle on José Marí, and Riquelme struck the resulting free kick against the bar. A few minutes later though the visitors took the lead, substitute Sonny Anderson picking up a bad clearance from Neru to place the ball wide of Ricardo.

Racing tried to fight back and got the ball in the net twice through Javi Guerrero and Juanma, but much to the disgust of the local crowd (and manager Lucas Alcaraz), both were disallowed for borderline offsides. Then with four minutes to go, Guayre got away down the right wing, José Marí stepped over his cross, and there was Riquelme to collect the ball and score the second. Racing were down and out, and Benito Floro's side were up to fifth place in the table. Could they be the team to take over the mantle from Alavés as the little club with big ambitions?