Villarreal believed until the final to pay off your visit to Larnaca with three priceless points. The ‘groguets’ seemed defeated, and Pacheta felt the noose around his neck until the arrival of the final stretch, when goals from Baena and Sorloth culminated a heroic comeback. Not even the foresight of Keouf, who saved two penalties in the first half, helped Maccabi Haifa score.
Despite the importance of the match, pacheta He chose to give a chance to those less common in the starting game. The bet was risky, but the players responded to the Burgos’s confidence with a good start in which only a providential intervention by Keouf against Brereton prevented Villarreal from taking the lead.
Maccabi Haifa began to recover as the minutes passed until they took control of the match. This superiority was rewarded with the goal prize when, taking advantage of a mistake by Alberto Moreno, Seck headed completely alone in the goal mouth. It may have seemed that the Senegalese centre-back was starting from an illegal position, but a false step by Gabbia enabled him.
Villarreal knew how to take the blow well, and shortly after Brereton forced a maximum penalty. Sorloth executed it perfectly, but Keouf flew to stop the shot. The Israeli goalkeeper’s save could have remained an anecdote, since the penalty had to be repeated, but he also guessed Manu Trigueros’ intentions on the second shot.
Keouf’s double intervention from eleven meters made the ‘groguets’ desperate, who looked for a tie until the end of the first half. Sorloth caressed him with a cross that became poisonous, but Sundgren slid low on the ground at the goal line to avoid the goal.
From the reaction to the miracle
Villarreal needed to give their best to reverse the result, and the truth is that He leaves the locker room tunnel with the firm intention of achieving it.. It didn’t take long for the ‘groguets’ to corner Maccabi Haifa in the area, but all their attempts were intercepted by the Israeli defense. As the minutes passed, this initial effervescence began to fade.
Pacheta was beginning to notice the pressure, which I tried to find the key by introducing changes of a clearly offensive nature.. Among them, Yeremy Pino, who had not added minutes since he was injured on October 8 against Las Palmas. The modifications once again woke up Villarreal, who had two good chances almost consecutively. Both, however, were stopped by Keouf.
When Villarreal began to despair and stop believing in the comeback, the expected reaction came. Baena, one of the changes introduced in the second half, laid the first stone by scoring the equalizer and Sorloth, taking advantage of a rebound, completed the feat in Larnaca.