Super Eagles, winger Samuel Chukwueze made it a perfect start to 2021 after he came off the bench for league chasers Villarreal as they returned to winning ways following their 2-1 win at home to Levante.
Having surrendered their 19 games unbeaten run in their final game of 2020 against Sevilla, the Eagles winger was once again subjected to start from the bench with the host hoping to clinch into the top 4 with a win.
They however needed just 19 minutes to take the lead when Alfonso Pedraza set up Fernando Nino for the opener with the 20-year-old making no mistake to fire home his second goal of the season and make it 1-0.
The Eagles winger then replaced the goal scorer at halftime, with Chukwueze making an instant impact as he helped doubled his side lead just before the hour mark setting up Gerrard Moreno from a swift counter-attack to give the Yellow Submarines a 2-0 lead.
Substitute Sergio Leon then set up a nervy finish when he reduced the deficit 17 minutes from time but the host held on to claim their 7th win of the campaign and move up to 4th, five points ahead of 6th place Barcelona.