Saturday, August 18, 2018

Prediction: Sevilla vs Real Madrid

Verdict: Over 3.5 goals

Best Odds: 17/16

Bookmaker: 888sport

Top-six hopefuls Sevilla play host to Real Madrid in a rearranged La Liga match which will be played on Wednesday night at the Sanchez Pizjuan stadium.

Sevilla

Los Rojiblancos will be on the hunt for crucial three points from the clash originally planned for 21 April. The meeting between Sevilla and Real Madrid ended up being rearranged due to Sevilla’s involvement in the Copa del Rey final against Barcelona.

Sevilla head into the Wednesday’s fixture of the back of a hard-fought 1-0 home triumph against Real Sociedad which saw Sevilla put an end to a nine-game winless stretch in all competitions. Montella’s men have thus recorded their first La Liga win in two months and will be more than motivated for the Real Madrid clash. Sitting eighth in La Liga standings, Sevilla are one point adrift of Getafe and still have a chance of making into the top-six which would be considered a success under the circumstances. Sevilla are more than aware that getting three points against the Champions League finalists and current holders will be easier said than done but the hosts will definitely hope to replicate the result from the last home game – back in January 2017 – when they emerged victorious 2-1. However, back-to-back defeats at Santiago Bernabeu and the total of nine goals conceded across those two games are ominous.

Team News

Midfielder Franco Vazquez is set for a return to the starting line-up after starting the 1-0 win over Real Sociedad on the bench.

Pablo Sarabia is suspended for the game, whereas Simon Kjaer and Lionel Carole are both suffering from a muscle problem and are likely to sit through the clash.

Real Madrid

A second-place finish in a league as competitive as the La Liga would be a success for any other side but Real Madrid who will be dearly disappointed once the current campaign comes to its end.

Los Blancos are currently trailing behind both the champions Barcelona and runners-up Atletico Madrid but with a game in hand compared to their city rivals, Los Blancos still have a chance of finishing in second. With the Champions League in Kyiv in the back of their mind, Real Madrid must give their best to overcome Sevilla in this rearranged game. They have been alternating between wins and draws in the League during the past six matches and will be keen to get back to winning ways in a crucial moment of the season. Zidane’s men have won only one of their last six trips to Sevilla. Still, their on the road record is impressive of late, knowing that Los Blancos won eight of their last ten matches away from Santiago Bernabeu. This time around, Zidane will have a couple of selection issues but his bench should be deep enough to help him overcome the absence of his biggest star Cristiano Ronaldo.

Team News

Cristiano Ronaldo picked up a knock during the El Clasico stalemate and will miss the forthcoming clash as Zidane wants to rest him ahead of the Champions League final.

Gareth Bale is unavailable through suspension whereas Dani Carvajal and Isco are both injured for the occasion.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Sevilla won only one of their last six home games
  • Real Madrid won 8 of their last 10 matches on the road
  • Over 2.5 goals were scored in last ten meetings of the two sides
  • Cristiano Ronaldo misses the next two matches due to injury
  • Sevilla are only one point behind the last remaining European spot

Conclusion

Sevilla and Real Madrid head into the Wednesday’s clash with a couple of notable omissions on both ends of the pitch. Los Blancos will be without Cristiano Ronaldo who will sit through the next two La Liga games in order to be ready for the Champions League final but his absence will do little damage to Real Madrid who have more than enough quality to replace him. Hosts have finally put an end to a frustrating winless run and now their resolve and strength is in front of a daring test as Montella’s men still chase a top-six finish.

Verdict: Over 3.5 goals

Best Odds: 17/16

Bookmaker: 888sport

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