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Real Betis 1-1 Villarreal

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Roberto Soldado was denied a dream debut for Villarreal as Ruben Castro struck late to earn Real Betis a 1-1 draw with the Yellow Submarine, who had Bruno Soriano sent off in stoppage time.

Soldado managed just seven Barclays Premier League goals in two seasons at White Hart Lane but needed just 32 minutes to open his account for his new club, thus giving Marcelino's side the lead at the Benito Villamarin.

But Betis were not to be denied on their return to the top flight after a year's absence, and their talisman Castro rescued a point by heading home on the rebound in the 87th minute.

The Andalusian side made a strong start to the game and played at a frenetic pace, but they were also vulnerable to Villarreal's attacks.

Soldado executed a fine volley at debutant goalkeeper Alphonse Areola after the midway point in the first half, and just a few minutes later got the goal he craved, bringing down a cross from Jaume Costa.

Betis were denied a possible penalty later in the half when Areola clumsily brought down Jorge Molina as he attempted to punch away a cross, while after the break the visitors squandered a couple of chances to put the game beyond their opponents' reach.

They were made to regret their wastefulness when Castro appeared to turn in the loose ball after Areola had parried two successive shots, and in a tense finish Villarreal captain Bruno saw red for kicking out at an opponent.

ends

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