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Villarreal fans pay tribute to the 96 victims of Hillsborough

Villarreal fans unfurled a banner paying tribute to the 96 Liverpool fans who died in the Hillsborough disaster ahead of the semi-final first leg.
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Villarreal fans pay tribute to the 96 victims of Hillsborough
BIEL ALINO AFP

Villarreal paid tribute to the 96 fans who died at the Hillsborough disaster prior to their Europa League semi-final first leg against Liverpool. The coastal club has prepared a huge tifo which will be unfurled at the south stand at El Madrigal prior to kick-off - it will feature the Villarreal club crest and the number 96 in large letters together with the title of Liverpool's famous anthem, "You'll never walk alone".

FUTBOL 15/16VILLARREAL - LIVERPOOL

A spokesman for the LaLiga club told AS: "We were very saddened by the Hillsborough tragedy wanted to show solidarity and support which our club and our fans have with Liverpool and those who were affected by Hillsborough".

The club also paid another tribute to the English city as the usual club hymn was replaced by the Beatles' song 'Yellow Submarine' - which was traditionally, the club's original anthem and sung in the towns and villages around Vila-real when the team gained promotion from the regional preferente league to the Third Division in 1966/7. The club has put together a video explaining their history, and how they got their 'Yellow Submarine' nickname which can be seen here:

Villarreal supporters hold their team's scarves during the UEFA Europa League semifinal first leg football match Villarreal CF vs Liverpool FC at El Madrigal stadium in Vila-real on April 28, 2016.

There was a party atmosphere in Vila-real before the game as residents and local institutions decorated their balconies for the game. 20,000 yellow commemorative scarves with 'Yellow Submarine' printed on them were be handed out as an inflatable submarine took to the streets of the city.