1:1 draw between FC Zurich and Villarreal CF
Thanks to a combative performance FC Zurich achieved a 1-1 draw against Villarreal CF tonight. Roberto Rodriguez equalized the score from the spot just before the final whistle.
The visitors from Spain put their opponents under a lot of pressure from kick-off and FC Zurich’s players struggled significantly to fend off Villarreal’s quick combination plays. Therefore, it came not as much of a surprise when Villarreal skipper Bruno Soriano opened the score with a header just 14 minutes in.
Although FC Zurich subsequently got into the game a little better, they did not manage to create any clear-cut scoring opportunities, while Villarreal caused considerably more danger in front of the Zurich goal. Only thanks to keeper Andris Vanins did the score remain 0-1: After an hour, he denied Senegalese striker Cédric Bakambu with two miraculous saves. And a few minutes later, Pato missed another promising opportunity.
Towards the end of the match, FC Zurich increased their pressure and pushed for the equalizer, and these efforts paid off a couple of minutes before the final whistle, when Koné was fouled in the box. Rodriguez converted the penalty confidently, tying the score at 1-1.
But the match wasn’t over just yet: In the last minute of injury time, Marchesano pushed the ball over the line from a rebound; the Italian referee, however, penalized a very close offside position and the goal did not count.
Tonight’s draw means that FC Zurich will need to beat Osmanlispor FK away in Ankara in their last Europa League group game to go through to the next round.