First Division - Day 31

Deportivo La Coruña 1 - Villarreal 1

Deportivo: Munúa; Manuel Pablo, Coloccini, Andrade, Romero; Sergio, Mauro Silva; Víctor (Scaloni 77'), Valerón, Munitis (Fran 55'); Diego Tristán (Luque 61'). 4-2-3-1.
Villarreal: Reina; Armando Sá, César Arzo, Peña, Arruabarrena; Marcos Senna (José Marí 79'), Josico; Guayre (Figueroa 67'), Riquelme, Sorín; Diego Forlán (Héctor Font 88'). 4-2-3-1.

Team changes: Deportivo: No change / Villarreal: Armano Sá, Peña, Guayre for Javi Venta, Gonzalo Rodríguez, José Marí.

1-0. 64. Luque. Bent free kick through defensive wall and in off Reina's post.
1-1. 86. César Arzo. Bundled ball in to net after Munúa dropped corner at his feet.

Villarreal drop down to fourth place, albeit with a game in hand, after drawing 1-1 at Deportivo La Coruña. The visitors were looking to bounce back after their surprise UEFA cup defeat at the hands of Alkmaar midweek, and they had the better of the first half. Diego Forlán shot wide in the opening minutes nd Josico headed a Riquelme corner over the top, and Munúa produced a double save from Sorín and Forlán close to the interval.

Irureta decided to ring the changes early in the second half, bringing on Fran for Munitis and then Luque for the injured Diego Tristán. The Catalan striker almost beat Reina from a free kick with his first touch of the ball, and a couple of minutes later did find the net with the help of a post from another free kick.

Now it was Pellegrini's turn to bring on reinforcements, and Figueroa came on to join Forlán up front. Forlán came close to equalising when his shot was deflected off a defender onto the post, and young defender César Arzo put another chance wide. But with a home victory seemingly on the cards, Munúa dropped a corner kick at the feet of Arzo who almost accidentally bundled the ball in to the net. That led to a frantic last five minutes with Depor, now down to ten men after Scaloni limped off, defending furiously. But after Sorín missed a last minute chance it was all over.