Villarreal and Marcelino suffer major setback as key forward tears ACL, set to miss the rest of the season

Villarreal were in positive spirits this week, for the first time in a while, after the return of iconic manager Marcelino Garcia Toral. However that news has been followed by a devastating injury to Yeremy Pino.

The 21-year-old has had a tough start to the season, coming in and out of the side due to injury, and only appearing 10 times for a total of 621 minutes. After returning a week ago against Maccabi Haifa, Yeremy started against Atletico Madrid only to be withdrawn at half-time.

As per Relevo, the worst diagnosis has been confirmed, and test on Thursday morning revealed that he has torn his anterior cruciate ligament. Generally with a recovery time of between seven and nine months, it will mean bidding farewell to the rest of the season for Yeremy.

Worse still, Yeremy had appeared in a number of Spain squads over the past two years, making 12 appearances and scoring twice. Yet this injury ends his hopes of going to the European Championships in Germany next summer with Spain.

For Villarreal, the blow will be a heavy one too. They are juggling the Europa League, Copa del Rey and La Liga, as they try to kickstart their season. Pino’s injury likely means that youngster Ilias Akhomach, recruited from Barcelona this summer, will see more game time. If he is called up by Morocco for the African Cup of Nations though, he could miss significant time too. If Marcelino does use his favoured 4-4-2, only Ilias, Ben Brereton Diaz and Alex Baena seem natural fits on the flanks of that formation.