Home Side Up Against the Wall
We predicted a close one for the first leg, and it was, but three fateful minutes doomed Villarreal. Now, Unai Emery’s team must pull off another stunner, just like it did in the previous two rounds. There’s a huge difference, though. So far, Liverpool has won all its games on the road.
Even so, the Yellow Submarine deserves to be considered tempting soccer picks underdog, especially at +375.
Villarreal Stronger at Home
Some are calling Villarreal’s 2-1 defeat against Deportivo Alaves a shocker, but not me. Advancing to the UCL Final is the Yellow Submarine’s priority. Therefore, several usual starters got some rest on Saturday against La Liga’s nineteenth place. The list includes Etienne Capoue, Juan Marcos Foyth, Pervis Estupinan, and Giovani Lo Celso.
Plus, Gerard Moreno, Raul Albiol, Francis Coquelin, and Arnaut Danjuma didn’t play at all due to injury. The first three are expected to return against Liverpool, but Danjuma remains doubtful. The Dutchman will be missed as he has scored 16 goals in all competitions.
The good news for the soccer odds underdogs is that the second leg will be at La Ceramica. The Spanish side hasn’t lost in its last 12 games at home in all competitions. That includes eight victories and finishing with a clean sheet seven times.
“We resisted defensively as much as we could in the first leg to have options in the second game. It will be different at La Ceramica. We will test them much more,” Emery explained to the press.
Regarding the continental tournament, Villarreal’s only victory at home, by two goals, was against Young Boys. We know that’s not encouraging, but don’t forget Moreno is coming back. He has scored 11 goals in all competitions.
Liverpool’s Perfect Pace
Unlike Villarreal, Liverpool managed to win prior to this crucial game. The Reds defeated Newcastle on Saturday 1-0 thanks to a goal from Naby Keita. That result allowed them to remain in the English Premier League title race. The Reds are one point behind Manchester City with four games left.
Like Emery, manager Jurgen Klopp gave rest to some usual starters, including Mohamed Salah, Fabinho Tavares, and Trent Alexander-Arnold. The right-back didn’t play at all.
As we mentioned before, the Reds remain perfect when playing on the road in the UCL. They defeated Porto (5-1), Atletico Madrid (3-2), AC Milan (2-1), Inter Milan (2-0), and Benfica (3-1). That’s why they dominate the soccer lines
with a -140 price. Besides having won the first leg, of course.
Another good reason is that Mohamed Salah is having another season to remember. The Pharaoh has scored 28 goals in all competitions. He’s followed by Diogo Jota with 21 and Sadio Mane with 20. There’s also the fact that Luiz Diaz adapted very quickly.
That’s very good news for Klopp because Roberto Firmino and Divock Origi remain questionable due to injury.
Besides remaining in the EPL and UCL title race, Liverpool already won the EFL Cup and will face Chelsea in the FA Cup final on May 14. In other words, this team was built to win any competition it enters.
Villarreal vs Liverpool Head-to-Head
- Previous Matches: 3
- Villarreal Victories: 1 (1 goal)
- Liverpool Victories: 2 (5 goals)
- Draws: 0
The first leg was close because Villarreal practically didn’t attack, in fact, the Yellow Submarine finished with no shots on target. The defense was up to the challenge, at least until Pervis Estupinan deflected a cross from Jordan Henderson. The first goal was an “own goal”. Later, Mane latched onto a beautiful pass from Salah to make it 2-0.
Their only previous meeting in Spain was for the Europa League Semifinals in the 2015-16 season. Villarreal won 1-0. This time, that wouldn’t be enough for the Yellow Submarine.
Villarreal vs Liverpool Game Information
- Date: Tuesday, May 3
- Time: 3:00 p.m. ET
- Location: La Ceramica, Villarreal
- Villarreal vs Liverpool Live Stream: fuboTV
Learn More About The UEFA Champions League Semi & Final Matchups
Villarreal vs Liverpool Betting Lines
Villarreal vs Liverpool Prediction
Villarreal’s defense is very good, especially when playing at home. In the Quarterfinals, the Spanish side limited Bayern Munich to only one goal, and it was in Germany. Prior to that, Bayern was averaging 3.75 goals per game.
That being said, we expect the Yellow Submarine to put up another good fight, but don’t think it will be enough for the upset. Liverpool’s offensive unit is more versatile. Plus, the Reds can relax a little as they could even lose 1-0 and still advance. Therefore, you should include the draw in your soccer picks.
Score Prediction: Villarreal 1, Liverpool 1