Villarreal will take on Liverpool in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final, just the second in the Spanish club’s history. That is one of a long line statistics which show the historical gap between the two – by the time Villarreal made it into La Liga for the first time, Liverpool had already won four European Cups.
Not least amongst those statistics is the financial chasm between the two. Owned by Spanish billionaire Fernando Roig, Villarreal have consistently punched above their financial weight despite investment. The Yellow Submarine have a turnover of just £104.5m, but did manage to secure a first major trophy last season with their Europa League victory over Manchester United.
That turnover is more than quadrupled by their opponents’ £487m income. The Liverpool Echo say that Liverpool’s squad has been assembled to the tune of £709m, in comparison to the £146m that Villarreal used to confect theirs. A vast difference of £563m, which should in theory tip the balance in Liverpool’s favour.
Arnaut Danjuma was brought in by Villarreal last summer and broke the record transfer fee for the Yellow Submarine, parting with £21.15m for the former Bournemouth player. That being said, Villarreal have invested money smartly and worked to bring in the likes of Etienne Capoue (£2m) and Dani Parejo (free) for low fees.