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The Yellow Submarine were desperate to avoid relegation to the second division and reportedly resorted to desperate actions to prevent losing the match

Villarreal's players asked Atletico Madrid to ease off in Sunday's contest between the two clubs, Canal Plus reports.

A goal from Radamel Falcao in the dying stages of the match earned Atletico the three points and sent the Yellow Submarine to the Segunda Division for the 2012-13 season.

TV footage shows Villarreal midfielder Javi Camunas telling Atletico's players that winning the match would be pointless after Malaga had taken the lead against Sporting Gijon, a result that would see the Rojiblancos finish fifth in the league and outside the Champions League qualification places.

"Filipe Luis, Malaga have scored," he reportedly exclaimed. "There is nothing for you to do here!"

Desperate to see the club avoid the drop, Villarreal's players then reportedly made up a second goal by Malaga in a bid to persuade Atletico to lower the intensity.

"Diego, Malaga are up 2-0," Carlos Marchena said.

After the match, a heartbroken Marchena promised that Villarreal would have their revenge over Atleti.

"[Diego] Godin, Diego..., motherf***ers, this is not over! Diego, Filipe Luis, this is not over!"