Cani scores in first-half stoppage time to give Villarreal a 1-0 lead at the halfway stage of their match against Barcelona this evening.
By Barney Corkhill, Assistant Editor Filed: Sunday, April 27, 2014 at 20:50 UK
Last Updated: Monday, April 28, 2014 at 13:08 UK
Villarreal have scored in stoppage time of the first half to take a 1-0 lead into the break against Barcelona this evening.
The first chance of the evening went the way of the visitors as Lionel Messi danced his way into the penalty area before steering a shot towards the bottom corner, but Sergio Asenjo got down well to make the save.
Villarreal responded with an opening of their own moments later as Bruno found space to shoot, but his effort flew past Pinto's post.
The hosts had another chance to break the deadlock in the 25th minute as Cani's low cross found Jonathan Pereira, but the Spaniard's effort deflected off Giovani dos Santos and over the bar.
Cani was once again involved in creating a clear chance on the half-hour mark, but this time Giovani couldn't get the vital touch to turn it home.
Barcelona threatened again shortly before half time as Alexis Sanchez made progress down the right flank before cutting the ball back for Xavi, who was well tackled by Mario Gaspar.
The hosts missed a glorious chance to take the lead in the 45th minute as Giovani advanced into the box before rolling a low cross to Javier Aquino, who was denied by a fine piece of defending from Marc Bartra to stop a certain goal.
It was only a temporary reprieve for Barca, however, as Villarreal took the lead moments later through Cani's cool finish, having latched on to Pereira's pass, giving his side the lead going into the break.