Sunday, March 3, 2024

Prediction: Sevilla vs Athletic Bilbao

Tom Dunstan in Free Soccer Predictions, La Liga 2 Jan 2024

741 Views

Verdict: Athletic Bilbao draw no bet

Best Odds: 4/5

Bookmaker: Olympusbet

Hoping to find a route into the top-four on Thursday evening, Athletic Bilbao will travel to the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan when they meet Sevilla.

Sevilla

Starting with the hosts, while Sevilla might have claimed a crucial 3-0 victory away at Granada on December 19th, Quique Sanchez Flores has a major job on his hands. Making an immediate return to losing ways last time out as they entered the festive interval with a 1-0 defeat against Atletico Madrid, the one-time Watford boss has seen his squad lose four of their previous five appearances across all competitions. Watching their Champions League adventure come to an end last month as they signed off their lackluster group stage run with a 2-1 loss against French outfit Lens, Sevilla are once again looking overhear shoulder at a looming relegation scrap. Opening the New Year holding just a three-point buffer from slipping into the relegation zone, Thursday’s hosts have also gained a reputation for their extended issues on home soil. In fact, Flores’ struggling squad have failed to win any of their last seven straight contests at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.

Team News

Dealing with what has been a real injury crisis this season, Sevilla will once again be without the likes of Marcus Acuna, Loic Bade, Jesus Navas and former Tottenham midfielder Eric Lamela on Thursday evening.

Opening his La Liga account against Granada last month, ex-Real Madrid icon Sergio Ramos will once again partner Nemanja Gudelj at the heart of Flores’ defence. Despite failing to notch a single La Liga strike since the start of November, Morocco international Youssef En Nesyri should be handed a full recall here.

Athletic Bilbao

As for the visitors, while Athletic Bilbao might have been frustrated last season as they missed out on the chance to book a European return, the Lions are enjoying a major domestic flurry this time around. Heading into the festive break with another rugged performance as they secured a 1-0 victory against Las Palmas, Ernesto Valverde’s side are dreaming of the chance to mount a genuine Champions League charge in 2024. With the mood around San Mames at a continued high and receiving a string of praise, the former Barcelona boss will be calling on his squad to make another La Liga statement here. In fact, on a purple patch that is highlighted by a 2-0 victory against Spanish giants Atletico Madrid on December 16th, Bilbao are unbeaten in all of their previous 10 straight appearances across all competitions. Riding what has been a stellar wave of momentum, Thursday’s guests should be smelling a potential opportunity when they arrive at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan in midweek.

Team News

Dealing with a long-term groin issue and not making a single La Liga appearance since back on October 7th, Athletic Bilbao are once again sweating over the fitness of homegrown defender Yeray Alvarez. However, the Lions are hopeful that Oscar de Marcos will overcome a recent ankle blow.

Coming off the bench and bagging a late winner against Las Palmas prior to Spain’s festive break, 20-year-old Unai Gomez could be handed a first La Liga start on Thursday evening. ex-Manchester United ace Ander Herrera will once again partner Benat Prados Diaz at the heart of Valverde’s midfield.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When Sevilla and Athletic Bilbao last met back on April 27th, Thursday’s hosts picked up a 1-0 victory at San Mames.
    • However, Sevilla have lost four of their previous five appearances across all competitions.
    • Likewise, Los Nervionenses have remarkably failed to win any of their last seven showdowns in front of their own supporters.
    • Athletic Bilbao are unbeaten in all of their previous 10 straight appearances across all competitions.
    • The Lions have also shipped just a single goal in any of their last five domestic appearances.

    Conclusion

    Entering the festive break in the midst of a real La Liga purple patch, Athletic Bilbao will be smelling the chance to make a statement here. Opening the New Year sat just three points adrift of breaking into the Champions League spots, the Lions will be looking to cash in on a Sevilla squad that are enduring another public crisis. Along with losing four of their previous five appearances across all fronts, Thursday’s hosts have also failed to muster a single win in front of their own supporters since the end of September.

    Verdict: Athletic Bilbao draw no bet

    Best Odds: 4/5

    Bookmaker: Olympusbet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
    Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan

    SHARE OR COMMENT ON THIS ARTICLE

    WE RECOMMEND

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    This field is required *

    Join the conversation!

    or Register

    Live Scores

    advertisement

    Betting Guide Advertisement

    advertisement

    Become a Writer
    More More
    Top