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Giuseppe Rossi is the hero

Madrid: Guiseppe Rossi was the hero on Monday with the only goal in Villarreal's 1-0 home win over lowly Zaragoza in the Spanish League.

The Italian striker calmly converted a penalty on 71 minutes, after he was pulled down by Leonardo Ponzio.

Rossi is fourth in the scorers' chart with 16 goals, and is likely to leave Villarreal this summer for a massive fee.

He had gone close to scoring four times before he put away the penalty, then almost made it 2-0 for the yellows before being taken off to unanimous applause.

Zaragoza striker Ikechukwu Uche was sent off in injury time after earning himself a second yellow card for diving in the Villarreal penalty area.

The win keeps alive Villarreal's hopes of finishing third and thus entering the Champions League directly. It now has 57 points from 32 games, six fewer than third-placed Valencia, which enjoyed a 3-0 romp at Almeria on Saturday.

Villarreal is nine points ahead of fifth-placed Athletic Bilbao, which won 2-1 at Osasuna on Sunday. Zaragoza is third from bottom with 33 points, the same as Malaga. — DPA

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