Bakambu double secures Villarreal win

Villarreal kept their slim Champions League hopes alive as they secured a comfortable 3-1 victory over Sporting Gijon at La Ceramica on Friday.

The hosts took a 1-0 lead into the half-time break and two early goals in the second half sealed the win, with Rojiblancos pulling one back 17 minutes from time.

Fran Escriba's side remain in fifth spot, although they closed within five points of the top four ahead of the weekend fixtures, while the Asturias club continue to slide towards relegation.

After Duje Cop narrowly missed the target after just four minutes for Sporting, the visitors got a foothold in the game and started to threaten.

The Yellow Submarine broke the deadlock in the 33th minute when Roberto Soldado fired into the bottom-right corner of the net after latching onto Rodri's downward header.

It remained 1-0 at the break, but it quickly become two as Cedric Bakambu steered home Jonathan dos Santos' cross on 47 minutes to double their lead.

Bakambu was on the scoresheet again 12 minutes later, the DR Congo forward running onto Soldado's pass and picking out the bottom-left corner of the goal from inside the box.

Not long after, Cop managed to draw a save out of Andres Fernandez with his header, and the visitors pulled one back moments later when Douglas Pereira sent a shot into the far corner of the net from inside the area on the right after being set up by Victor Rodriguez.