Liverpool will have to win at Anfield to qualify for the Europa League final when they take on Villarreal in the second leg of their semi-final after they lost 1-0 to the Yellow Submarines at the Estadio El Madrigal Stadium on Thursday.
Adrian Lopez scored a late winner in the 92nd minute for Marcelino Garcia’s side who are bidding to reach their first ever European final over the two legs having fallen short on three previous occasions at this stage.
Roberto Soldado came close to putting Villarreal ahead but dragged an angled shot wide of the left post in the 11th minutes when he fired Bruno quick free-kick pass.
The Yellow Submarines increased the tempo of game with the team’s top scorer Cedric Bakambu forcing three great saves from the in-form Simon Mignolet in goal in the closing stages of the encounter.
In the other semi-final first leg in Ukraine, Shakhtar Donetsk were forced to a 2-2 draw at home to defending champions Sevilla.
Unai Emery took a sixth-minute lead through Vitolo, but it was Shakhtar that entered the half-time break with the advantage courtesy of goals from Marlos and Taras Stepanenko.
Kevin Gameiro restored parity from the penalty spot in the 82nd minute to hand Sevilla an advantage ahead of the second leg in Seville next week.
Europa League – Semi-finals
Shakhtar Donetsk 2 – 2 Sevilla
Villarreal 1 – 0 Liverpool