UCL: Villarreal surprises Bayern Munich in the quarter final

Villarreal upset six-time European Cup champions Bayern Munich with a merited 1-0 victory after producing a hat trick of opportunities in a frenzied Champions League quarter-final first leg on Wednesday.

Arnaut Danjuma, a Nigerian-born Dutch attacker, scored in the eighth minute to give Unai Emery’s team a slim lead heading into the second leg next Tuesday at the Allianz Arena in Munich.

Villarreal took the game to Bayern and should have won by a wider margin considering their excellent chances.

The Europa League holders smothered Julian Nagelsmann’s squad, who battled to find their footing in the final third and were a constant threat to goalie Manuel Neuer on the counter.

Villarreal had a Francis Coquelin attempt ruled out for offside, while Gerard Moreno almost scored twice, first with a long-range shot that struck the post and then with an effort from within his own half that went wide.

Danjuma and Alfonso Pedraza missed two great opportunities in the last few minutes, both from within the box.

“Our squad is really eager and modest,” Man-of-the-Match Giovani Lo Celso told Movistar Plus. “But we played one of the finest teams in the world, and we leave with the feeling that we should have scored many more goals.”

“We knew we wanted to narrow the field for them since they are a team that can’t have open places to work the ball.” We played our game, we are a side that always tries to be the protagonist, and we had a lot of chances to win by a wider margin.”

Unai Emery, the coach of Villarreal, has a record four Europa League crowns, three of which he won with Sevilla, and his new team seems to have absorbed his DNA and adapted it to the Champions League in their quest to fight with the top teams.

They ousted Juventus in the last 16 and have now stunned Bayern, who were unblemished in this year’s campaign and suffered their first Champions League loss away from home since 2017.

The buildup to Villarreal’s victory began with Moreno, the Yellow Submarine’s heart and soul.

He got the ball on the right touchline and sent it through to Lo Celso, whose low cross was hit first time by Dani Parejo. Neuer seemed to have it covered, but Danjuma got there first and stroked the ball in from close range.

“We know it will be a very different game in Germany,” skipper Parejo told reporters.

“We had at least five chances to score, and they didn’t produce a single one.” That tells a lot about what we’re capable of. So we’ll go there and compete with the same zeal.”

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