Samuel Chukwueze came on as a substitute to put on a brilliant display as Villarreal continued their impressive start to the season, defeating a winless Elche 4-0 on Sunday.
Chukwueze grabs assist as Villarreal’s 4-0 victory sends behind Madrid, Barcelona
The Yellow Submarines continued their fine form and are yet to concede a goal nor lose a a match this season.
The victory meant that Unai Emery’s men had now gone four games without conceding this season, nor losing a game.
As expected, Villarreal controlled the game from the start, although it would take until the 26th minute to finally break down a stubborn Elche defence.
Gerard Moreno had a goal ruled out for offside after a VAR review, but he timed his run to perfection just minutes later and stabbed home the rebound after his initial effort produced an outstanding reflex save from Édgar Badía.
The dominance continued as the hosts pushed for a second, and it ultimately came via a beautiful strike from Giovani Lo Celso.
The angle looked too tight for a shot, but the Argentine smashed the ball across the goal and it thudded off the post and into the back of the net.
Although Villarreal continued to dominate immediately after halftime, their failure to add a third allowed the visitors to slowly grow into the game, while the hosts opted to sit back and look for counter-attack opportunities rather than try to control possession.
However, despite having the bulk of the possession in the second half, Elche failed to trouble Gerónimo Rulli and ended the game without a shot on target.
The home side eventually added some gloss to the scoreline as they bagged two late goals. Francis Coquelin had the freedom of the box to lash home a volley before José Luis Morales rounded the goalkeeper and slotted into an empty net in injury time.
The win elevates Villarreal to third spot in the table, which suggests they will be in contention for a top-four finish this campaign, but Elche are in big trouble.