Villarreal kick off their 2020-21 La Liga campaign against newly promoted Huesca in a home match at the quaint Estadio de la Ceramica. The occasion will also mark former Arsenal boss Unai Emery's first official match in charge of the Yellow Submarine.
Emery takes over from the departing Javier Calleja who oversaw the majority of a tumultuous 2019-20 season for Villarreal, eventually guiding them to a fifth-placed finish and Europa League qualification.
It was an appointment of intent by the club, seeking out a coach who possesses a well-documented resume in European competition, as they aim to chip away at the 10-point gap between them and fourth-placed Sevilla.
Villarreal have also benefited from Valencia's post-season implosion, picking up influential midfielders Dani Parejo on a free and Francis Coquelin for just €6.5 million. The loan addition of the electric Takefusa Kubo from Real Madrid will also provide them with a creative spark going forward.
However, the loss of Santi Cazorla - and his 26 goal involvements in the 2019-20 season - is bound to rankle.
Their opponents on the night will be newly-promoted side Huesca, who re-enter La Liga at the first time of asking having been relegated in their maiden top flight season in 2018-19.
They will kick off their campaign hoping that front man and one-time Premier League winner Shinji Okazaki can help motor them to safety - and prevent history from repeating itself.
Villarreal vs Huesca Head-to-Head
The two teams have played each other a total of six times in the past, with Villarreal slightly edging the win column with two wins to one for Huesca.
The other three meetings have ended in draws.
Villarreal form guide: L-W-L-L-W
Huesca form guide: W-W-W-W-L
Villarreal vs Huesca Team News
Villarreal will be looking to bed in a new manager, players and ethos - so this outing against the newly-promoted Huesca will be anything but a walk in the park.
The introduction of Dani Parejo will go a long way towards off-setting the loss of Santi Cazorla in the creativity department while Gerard Moreno, Takefusa Kubo and Paco Alcacer should provide plenty of cut and thrust up front.
Injuries: Alberto Moreno, Ramiro Guerra
Doubtful: Carlos Bacca
Michel has his men working hard for each other and will likely set up in a disciplined 4-3-3, which can transition into a 4-5-1, to nullify Villareal's attacking threat.
Shinji Okazaki top-scored for Huesca with 12 goals last season and would be looking to get off the mark against Villarreal.
Doubtful: Pablo Insua
Villarreal vs Huesca Predicted Lineups
Villarreal predicted XI (4-4-2): Sergio Asenjo, Ruben Pena, Raul Albiol, Pau Torres, Samuel Chukwueze, Dani Parejo, Vicente Iborra, Takefusa Kubo, Gerard Moreno, Paco Alcacer
Huesca predicted XI (4-5-1): Andrez Fernandez, Pablo Maffeo, Jorge Pulido, Pablo Insua, Luisinho, Mikel Rico, Pedro Mosquera, Rafa Mir, Juan Carlos Real, David Ferreiro, Shinji Okazaki
Villarreal vs Huesca Prediction
Villarreal will likely have too much in the tank for Huesca to deal with. It is also worth considering that despite getting promoted as Segunda Division winners, Michel's men only averaged a paltry 1.05 points per game away from home.
It is a tough ask to buck that trend against what appears to be a strengthened Villarreal side, under a proven winner like Unai Emery.
Yellow will, most likely, be the colour of the day.
Prediction: Villarreal 3-0 HuescaPublished 11 Sep 2020, 20:17 IST