Bayer 04 Leverkusen held Villarreal CF to a goalless draw in their UEFA Europa League Round of 16 second leg, but were eliminated from the competition 2-0 on aggregate.
Despite losing the first leg in Spain 2-0, Leverkusen gave an honest account of themselves in their efforts to turn the tie. The first meaningful chance of the night fell to Leverkusen midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu, but the angle was always against the Turkey international as he attempted to round Villarreal goalkeeper Sergio Asenjo. Further clear-cut openings were at a premium, with Bayer’s Marlon Frey blazing the best of them over on the stroke of half time.
Leverkusen almost halved the deficit in the 54th minute when Kyriakos Papadopoulos powered a Calhanoglu corner into the ground and against the crossbar. The home side’s play was becoming increasingly urgent, but that inevitably left Villarreal with ample space to counter. Roberto Soldado could have put the tie beyond doubt for the visitors, and while Calhanoglu made Sergio Asenjo work, the sought-after comeback did not materialise.
Man of the match
Calhanoglu was a doubt for the game with a cold, but gave everything to try and get Leverkusen back in the contest.
Leverkusen: Leno - Bellarabi, Tah, Papadopoulos (Ramalho 79'), Wendell - Frey, Kramer (Yurchenko (67') - Mehmedi (Kruse 59'), Brandt - Calhanoglu - Chicharito
Villarreal: Sergio Asenjo - Mario, Bailly, Victor Ruiz, Rukavina - Pina, Bruno Soriano - Denis Suarez (Pedraza 89'), Samu Castillejo (Manu Trigueros 61') - Bakambu, Soldado (Adrian Lopez 73')