Sports / Soccer

Villarreal eliminate Bayer Leverkusen from UEFA Europa League

Updated: 2016-03-18 09:25

BERLIN - Villarreal held Bayer Leverkusen to a goalless draw to progress 2-0 on aggregate after the second leg in Europa League's round of the last 16 on Thursday.

Villarreal eliminate Bayer Leverkusen from UEFA Europa League

Bayer Leverkusen's Jonathan Tah reacts after the match. [Photo/Agencies] 

The goalless draw was enough for the visitors as harmless Bayer Leverkusen were unable to turn around a 2-0 loss from the first leg. With the result, Leverkusen will have to concentrate on domestic matters meanwhile Villarreal secured their place in the quarterfinals for a fourth time.

Villarreal staged a faultless defensive performance to drive pressing Bayer Leverkusen to desperation over 90 minutes. The hosts dominated the ball but lacked in accuracy to threat Villarreal's well-positioned defence. Thus, goal-scoring opportunities remained a rare occurrence in front of 23.409 spectators at Bay Arena.

However, the visitors did not only defend well but they also created dangerous fast breaks as Deniz Suarez forced defender Kyriakos Papadopoulos to block an effort in the last nick of time in the 34th minute.

Leverkusen controlled the ball but was missing in ideas to overcome Villarreal's bulwark. The host had to wait until the 54th minute to produce the first promising opportunity as Hakan Calhanoglu's corner found Papadopoulos, whose header defused goalkeeper Sergio Asenjo.

Despite less ball possession Villarreal looked always more dangerous in their finish than the hosts. Manu Trigueros' shot on the empty goal should have made the game safe but Andre Ramalho scratched the ball from the line, before Adrian Lopez squandered another premium chance moments later. It did not matter though, as Villarreal never looked in danger to give away their first-leg advantage.

"We controlled the proceedings on the pitch but we lacked in urgency. A goal would have given us an impetus. Villarreal played better in both legs," Bayer Leverkusen coach Roger Schmidt said.

"We outclassed Bayer Leverkusen in both encounters," Villarreal coach Marcelino Garcia Toral said.
The UEFA Europa League quarterfinal draw will be held on Friday, March 18, in Nyon, Switzerland.

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