Villarreal’s slide continued as a Diego Castro header gave Getafe a 1-1 draw in La Liga on Sunday, but the match was overshadowed by a serious injury to Mateo Musacchio.
The Villarreal defender was carried off on a stretcher with 13 minutes to go after his ankle buckled when he was running for the ball.
He has since been successfully operated on in hospital after suffering a dislocation and break.
An Ikechukwu Uche penalty, after he himself was fouled by Medhi Lacen with 52 minutes played, was Villarreal’s first goal in five league games but it was not enough to give them their first La Liga away win of the year.
In a scrappy game Getafe deservedly drew level with a fine header from Castro after 64 minutes and Pedro Leon had the chance to win the game, but his shot following a breakaway was parried by Villarreal keeper Sergio Asenjo.
Villarreal have failed to win in seven games in all competitions and are sixth on 51 points.
Getafe are 13th on 36 points.
“We looked strong after going ahead, but then Getafe scored during their best spell,” Garcia added.
An 18-match unbeaten run up until February saw Villarreal alive on three fronts, but in the last couple of months the wheels have come off.
They were knocked out of the Copa del Rey and the UEFA Europa League while their dreams of a UEFA Champions League spot have faded.
Injuries have taken their toll with Bruno Soriano and Denis Cheryshev among the key players that have missed games, and now the loss of Musacchio, who also spent a lengthy spell in the treatment room earlier in the season, will be a big blow.
Elsewhere, Sergio Garcia gave RCD Espanyol a 1-0 home victory over Athletic Bilbao that moved them up to eighth and Real Sociedad could only draw 2-2 at home with struggling RC Deportivo de La Coruna.
Sociedad twice went ahead, but los Turcos fought back with goals from Lucas Perez and Toche.
Enzo Roco and Mario Pasalic scored as Elche won 2-0 at bottom side Cordoba.
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