Sep 29, 2013 at 8pm UK at ​Estadio Benito Villamarin
Real Betis
1-0
Villarreal
Igiebor (36')
Mati (5'), Cifuentes (23'), Amaya (53'), Torres (62'), Reyes (79'), Didac (89')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Mario (10'), Jokic (72'), Cani (79')

Live Commentary: Real Betis 1-0 Villarreal - as it happened

Real Betis' Jorge Molina celebrates his goal on February 24, 2013
© AFP
Relive Sports Mole's coverage of the La Liga clash at the Estadio Benito Villamarin where Real Betis beat Villarreal 1-0.

Villarreal travelled to Real Betis on Sunday looking to continue their unbeaten start to the season.

The home side took a lead into the interval, however, following a strike from Nosa Igiebor after 36 minutes.

Villarreal improved in the second period, but they could not make the breakthrough with Betis holding on for a vital three points.

Read how it all unfolded in Sports Mole's minute-by-minute live commentary of the action below.


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7.52pmEvening all! Our final La Liga live commentary of the evening comes from Seville as Real Betis welcome Villarreal. It has not quite been the start that Betis would have wanted with just five points from their six matches thus far. However, Villarreal have been in extraordinary form on their return to La Liga, winning four of their six matches, remaining unbeaten in the process.

7.54pmIn terms of the recent meetings between the two sides, it does not make good reading for Betis. Villarreal have won three of the last five matches, with Betis also winning once and the other ending in a draw. Betis did record a 3-1 win in this stadium in April 2012, but Villarreal have enjoyed recent success here with a 1-0 win in April 2008.

7.56pmBetis have found the back of the net on just six occasions so far this season, while Villarreal have registered 12 goals in their six matches. Down the other end the statistics are fairly similar with Betis conceding seven times to Villarreal’s six. If Betis are to make a European push this season, these are the type of matches that they simply have to be winning.

7.58pmTEAMS:

REAL BETIS XI: Sara; Chica, Paulao, Amaya, Didac; Lolo, Matilla, Nosa, Vadillo, Verdu; Molina.

VILLARREAL XI: Asenjo; Mario, Musacchio, Dorado, Jokic; Bruno, Trigueros; Cani, Aquino, Pereira; Uche


1 minSo there have it. Chuli, Juanfran and Salva Sevilla drop out of the Betis XI this evening with Alvaro Vadillo, Reyes and Igiebor all returning. Villarreal, meanwhile, leave forward pair Perbet and Giovani dos Santos on the bench, but Aquino and Pereira both start. Right, the away side get the action underway on this warm evening in Spain.

2 minThree points for Villarreal this evening would move them into third position, overtaking Real Madrid in the process, which is an indication of their performance levels in the early part of the season. The early pressure comes from the home side as Vadillo wins a corner down the right. The set piece is delivered by Verdu, but Dorado is on hand to clear the danger under pressure from Reyes.

4 minNeither side has really settled in the early stages with both sides guilty of losing possession too easily in the final third. Villarreal attempt to force the issue on the counter following good work from Pereira, but his low cross is straight into the arms of the Betis stopper. I would be surprised if we did not see goals in Seville this evening.

6 minIt is an old cliché, but you just get the feeling that the first goal - if we indeed have one - could be crucial in this type of match. Betis are certainly in need of the points, but Villarreal will be in no mood to end their current run of form. No real opportunities for either side thus far as Molina fires a cross into the stands for the home side.

8 minAquino's pace causes Betis problems once more as the Mexican collects a pass from Cani before moving past Matilla, but the Spaniard just manages to clear at the vital moment. The resulting corner is whipped straight onto the head of Mario, but his header is into the arms of the goalkeeper. Villarreal have just started to take control of the possession in the final third.

10 minMario becomes the first Villarreal player to enter the book for a late challenge on Reyes inside the away side's half, but the resulting free kick comes to nothing. Betis do force the issue moments later with a deep cross from Matilla, but it just moves over the head of Vadillo. Still goalless, but plenty of attacking intent from both sides with 10 minutes on the clock in Seville.

13 minHalf-chance for the home side once more as Igiebor collects possession outside the box before attempting to strike one towards the top corner, but it was always rising high and wide of the crossbar. Villarreal are down the other end with Uche moments later, but the Nigerian just loses control at the vital moment under pressure from Paulao.

15 minNot too much to report in the last couple of moments with both sides guilty of losing possession too easily in the final third. Meanwhile, the referee has been forced to issue a couple of cards with a number of late challenges arriving from both sides. The latest free kick allows Villarreal the chance to test Sara, but Cani's effort is straight into the wall.

17 minAgain Aquino is the danger for Villarreal as the Mexican picks the pocket of Reyes before delivering a low cross into the box, but Paulao just manages to clear at the vital moment. It falls to Bruno just outside the box, but Igiebor is quick on the scene. Hardly time for either midfield to have a moment to think this evening. High-tempo opening 17 minutes to this La Liga encounter.

20 minHalf-chance for the home side as Chica strikes an effort from inside the box, but Asenjo is on hand to make a smart save. The resulting corner is delivered into the box by Verdu, but Amaya's header is straight into the arms of Asenjo. Busy couple of minutes for the Villarreal stopper, who is on loan from Atletico Madrid this season.

22 minGood spell for Betis in the last four or five minutes with the effort from Chica spurring them into life. Villarreal, however, have already demonstrated their ability to defend in the early part of this season. Uche attempts to lead a counter for the away side moments later, but he is chopped down by Vadillo, who picks up a booking in the process.

25 minHalf-chance for the away side this time as Pereira turns inside the Betis box before striking an effort from close range, but Sara is across to make a fine save. Vadillo is on the counter moments later, but he is chopped down by Jokic. The referee has been more involved than he would have liked in the last couple of moments as the challenges continue to arrive from both sets of players.

27 minVillarreal's main threat continues to come from the wide positions with Pereira and Aquino coming inside at every opportunity. The former comes close to meeting a through pass from Cani, but Sara is out to collect at the vital moment. Both managers are fairly vocal on the sidelines as we move closer to the 30-minute mark in this La Liga affair. Still goalless.

29 minCHANCE! Wonderful opportunity for the home side to open the scoring as Verdu delivers a sensational free kick into the box, but there are no takers despite a number of green and white shirts being present inside the box. Any touch and that would have been 1-0. Little over 15 minutes of football remaining in the first period.

32 minNot too much for the home supporters to get excited about at the moment with Betis struggling for inspiration in the final third. No such problem for Villarreal as Cani combines with Bruno before whipping a wonderful cross into the box, but Sara is on hand to collect under pressure from Uche. The home supporters are just starting to get a little bit frustrated as another attack breaks down moments later.

34 minVillarreal want a penalty as Cani dances past three Betis defenders before falling inside the box, but the referee is not interested. It would have been soft that is for certain. Slight problem for Paulao moments later as the Brazilian falls to the ground holding his knee. However, it does appear that the Betis centre-back will be fit to continue.

36 minGOAL! Betis 1-0 Villarreal (Igiebor)

37 minFirst blood to Betis! The home side take the lead after 36 minutes as Igiebor converts from close range after Verdu had been denied inside the box by Asenjo. What a time to break the deadlock in what has been a close encounter thus far.

39 minThis will be a true test of Villarreal's credentials for a European place this season. They have been stunning in the early part of the campaign, but they must now come from behind. They respond with a free kick just outside the box, but Sara manages to bundle Trigueros's delivery clear under pressure from Uche.

42 minSlightly untidy last couple of moments with the referee forced to intervene following a number of late challenges from both sides. The goal has certainly raised the atmosphere inside the stadium, but there is an underlying nervousness each time Villarreal force players into the Betis half. Little over three minutes of the first period remaining in Seville.

44 minCHANCE! Wonderful football from Villarreal as Uche lofts a searching pass towards Pereira, the Spaniard manages to move it past the goalkeeper with his first touch, but Sara gathers at the second time of asking. Igiebor breaks for Betis moments later, but Mario is across to clear the danger at the vital moment.

45+1 minVillarreal continue to look for the through pass towards Uche, but the Nigerian has been ruled offside twice in quick succession in the last couple of moments. The fourth official indicates that we will play an additional minute at the end of the first period.

45+1 minHALF TIME: Betis 1-0 Villarreal

8.47pmSo there we have it. The referee brings the half to an end with Betis leading 1-0 courtesy of a poacher's effort from Igiebor after 36 minutes. Villarreal have had their moments, but have been unable to open their tally for the evening. It is so delicately poised ahead of the second period.

8.52pmSTATISTICS: Betis dominated the possession in the first period with 62%, while they had five attempts to Villarreal's three. The referee was forced to issue three cards in the opening 45 minutes, meanwhile, with both teams guilty of making a number of late challenges. Betis' pass success rate (83%) was also superior to Villarreal's (72%) in the first period.

8.57pmBENCH WATCH: The home side have a number of attacking options on the bench in the shape of Chuli, Juanfran and Salva Sevilla. Meanwhile, Villarreal have the likes of Perez, Perbet and Giovani dos Santos. I would be surprised if a couple of early changes were not made in the second period.

46 minHere we go then. Both sets of players join us on the pitch for the second period. As it stands, Betis would move into 11th position in the table, while Villarreal would remain fourth. However, you just get the feeling that we have not seen the last of the goals. Betis get the second period underway.

48 minJust a reminder that three points for Villarreal this evening would move them into third position in the table, but as it stands they would remain fourth. A half-chance arrives for the away side moments later as Pereira threatens to advance beyond Amaya, but the Betis defender manages to clear at the vital moment.

50 minPin-ball inside the Betis box as the home side struggle to clear a deep cross from Cani, but the linesman's flag does save them at the final moment. Betis are down the other end with the goalscorer Igiebor moments later, but this time his effort deflects high and wide of the crossbar.

52 minNot too much to report in terms of clear opportunities in the last few moments with both sides struggling to find that elusive pass in the final third. I suspect both managers will look to their respective benches this evening if the score remains the same in the next 10 minutes or so. One thing is for certain, both have players on the sidelines that could effect proceedings this evening.

55 minWonderful chance for Mario as the Villarreal defender finds himself unmarked inside the box, but his effort is straight at the goalkeeper. However, it would not have counted with the offside flag raised. Good spell for Villarreal as they continue to break with pace and numbers, but Betis have been nice and compact in defence in the second period. Still 1-0 to the home side with 55 minutes on the clock.

57 minHalf-chance for Verdu on the counter as the Betis midfielder finds himself in a two-on-two situation with the Villarreal defence, but his pass towards Molina leaves the Spaniard with too much to do. Double change for the away side moments later as Giovani and Pina replace Pereira and Trigueros.

59 minImmediate involvement for Giovani as the Mexican collects a pass from Cani before advancing into the Betis box, but Amaya is across to make a fine challenge at the vital moment. The resulting corner is driven into the box by Cani, but it drifts straight out of play. Little over 30 minutes of football remaining in Seville.

62 minThe home supporters are really getting behind their team in a period where Villarreal are in the driving seat. The introduction of Giovani has certainly worried the home side as the Mexican continues to find space in the final third. Meanwhile, the pitch continues to cut up, which is making it hard for the players.

64 minBetis make their first change of the match as Nacho enters the field to replace Matilla, who has been impressive this evening. Not too much for the home supporters to get excited about at the moment, however, with the team in yellow really forcing the issue. Still more than enough time for this match to change.

66 minNot too much to report in the last couple of moments with both sides guilty of losing possession too easily in the final third. Villarreal's tempo has just dropped, but they remain a threat down each wing. A wonderful cross from Pina comes into the Betis box moments later, but Vila manages to clear.

68 minBetis make their second change of the evening as Juanfran enters the field in place of Vadillo. Safe to say that is not the most popular decision with the home supporters. Verdu attempts to find the run of Molina moments later, but Mario is across to clear the danger. Little over 20 minutes of football remaining in Seville.

71 minVillarreal make their third and final change as Perbet replaces Uche, who has certainly put himself about this evening. Verdu has another opportunity to strike one from distance moments later, but the Betis midfielder can only fire high and wide of the target. You just get the feeling that there is another goal left in this match.

73 minMarcelino is doing his best to raise his side at the moment as he gestures that he wants more from his players. The Yellow Submarine are the team in control, but Betis have defended well this evening. Jokic picks up a yellow card moments later for a late challenge on Molina just outside the box.

75 minThe resulting free kick is taken by Verdu, but his effort deflects off the ball and over the crossbar. Verdu walks across to take the corner, but this time he delivers onto the head of Mario. Molina has a half-chance from another deep Verdu cross moments later, but he can only head into the arms of Asenjo. Still 1-0 with little over 15 minutes of football remaining in this La Liga encounter.

78 minIt's good work from Nacho as the Spaniard comes inside before striking an effort towards goal, but it was always moving wide of the post. Villarreal attempt to force the issue down the other end with the left-back Jokic, but the move breaks down inside the box with Perbet.

80 minThe offside flag continues to frustrate Villarreal as Aquino delivers a wonderful cross into the box, but the Mexican had just moved too soon down the right. The end-to-end period of the match continues as Molina battles for possession inside the Villarreal box, but it ends with a free kick to the away side, which is not a popular decision with the home supporters there is no question about that.

83 minBetis make their third and final change of the evening as Lolo Reyes is replaced by Xavi Torres. The former leaves with a parting gift, however, as the referee books him timewasting while leaving the field. Verdu tumbles just outside the Villarreal box moments later, but the referee is not interested. Little over five minutes of normal time remaining. Is there to be a late sting in the tail?

85 minCHANCE! Wonderful opportunity for Betis to secure all the points as Verdu finds himself in a one-on-one situation with Asenjo, but the Villarreal stopper makes a fine save before Musacchio clears the danger at the vital moment. Little over five minutes of football remaining, with Betis' one-goal lead still standing.

88 minIt just hasn't quite happened for Villarreal this evening as a Cani pass moves out of play following good work from Mario. Little over two minutes of normal time remaining and it appears that they are heading for their first defeat of the season. That said, they left it late against Almeria on the opening weekend of the season. Could there be a repeat here?

90 minIt is a case of 'anywhere will do' for Betis at the moment as they continue to repel each long pass into their box. Cani attempts to take matters into his own hands moments later, but Didac tugs the shirt of the midfielder. The fourth official indicates that we will play an additional three minutes at the end of normal time.

90+2 minVillarreal want a penalty as Aquino falls in the box under pressure from Amaya, but the referee is not interested. That brings a furious reaction from Marcelino, who is sent to cool off. Time is just starting to run out for the away side as Betis keep possession with little more than one minute remaining.

90+3 minFULL TIME: Betis 1-0 Villarreal

9.52pmSo there we have it. The referee brings the match to an end with Betis picking up a vital three points. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for the action and be sure to join us tomorrow for Granada against Athletic Bilbao. Good evening!

Fulham's Steve Sidwell celebrates after scoring the opening goal against Real Betis during a friendly match on August 5, 2013
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11Las PalmasLas Palmas00000000
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