Those of Unai emery they will be seen before him Manchester City in the knockout stages of the Champions League. After finishing second in a group with ManUnited, Atalanta and Young Boys, Villarreal will face one of the coconuts in the draw.
It should be remembered that among the possible rivals were also Bayern Munich, Juventus, Lille, Ajax Amsterdam and Liverpool.
The set of Guardiola, first in the Premier league and one of the main favorites to win this Champions League, was first in a group in which they were also PSG, RB Leipzig and Bruges. Despite falling at the Parc des Princes (2-0), City showed a much higher level on the return leg in the Etihad, tracing Mbappé’s initial goal with goals from Sterling Y Gabriel Jesus (2-1). Already classified as first of group, Guardiola gave rest to several players on the last day against Leipzig, who defeated the ‘citizens’ 2-1. After 6 games, the English team has scored 18 goals and conceded 10.
The City comes to the meeting with a Bernardo silva unleashed, with seven goals and one assist this season, in which he is shining in both the Premier and the Champions League.
The other star is Kevin de Bruyne, who after testing positive at the end of November, has only started one of the last three games (against Leipizig), but despite them remains one of Pep’s most valuable assets.
This is how the pairings of the eighths have remained
Precedents between the two
It is the fourth time that the ‘groguet’ team has participated in the top European competition. In 2011 they already faced Manchester City in the group stage, and the English were victorious in both (2-1 at Etihad and 0-3 at La Cerámica).
In the absence of confirming the date and time, Villarreal will play the first leg at home and will have to travel to Manchester to play the second leg at the Etihad Stadium (55,097 spectators).