Sevilla v Girona - La Liga - Week 23

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After the euphoria of reaching our 17th Cup Final in what has been an absolutely incredible twelve years, it is back to the more mundane but equally important business of La Liga this weekend.

With Champions League qualification slowly slipping from our grasp, now is the time to put April 21st to the back of our minds, and fully focus on the arrival of FC Girona, who have been far and away the surprise package of the season for sure. They are currently sitting in 9th place, only 2 points behind us, and will fancy their chances of making their own claim for European Qualification.

The last time Girona visited the city they left heartbroken after taking a 94th minute lead over Real Betis, only for a 95th minute equalizer spoiling their party. They will surely fancy their chances of going one better this time around, and a win would see them leap-frog us. We simply cannot allow that to happen at this stage of the season.

Take a look at how tight things are from 3rd all the way down to 12th!! Athletic Bilbao could also enter that list of teams later tonight (Friday) when they host lowly and relegation doomed Las Palmas.

So quite clearly, we are only a defeat or two away from being dragged into a mid-table dog fight, whereas a few consecutive wins could see us back in the race for Champions League qualification. It is really that finely balanced and could go either way at the moment. This is a pivotal point of the season and we simply cannot afford to fail. Talk of the final should be banned!

Team news will be posted here as and when it becomes available, but one thing we know for sure is Ever Banega will be missing due to a hamstring injury he picked up in the latter stages of Wednesday night’s game. If it is just a standard hamstring injury his focus will be on returning for at least one of the two Manchester Utd games. Get well soon Ever! Franco Vazquez could also do with a rest after completing 90 minutes last time out. Saying that, he looks permanently shattered, so maybe he will get a start again, as Montella seems to really like him.

How do you think we will line up? Time to rest some regulars, or keep the momentum going? Is Banega’s injury the opportunity for Roque Mesa to shine? Does Nico Pareja deserve another chance after the horror show vrs Eibar?

We have already beaten Girona 1-0 last September, with Muriel scoring the decisive goal. A repeat scoreline would be more than welcome on Sunday afternoon.




Good post :wink:
Well we are ony 6 points off CL spot and many games to play, if we continue to progress like we are we can only hope the teams above have a stutter! I think RM will jump to 3rd and that leaves us competing with Villareal & Valencia. We lost touch with our away form, which now needs to improve, but I do think the Jan window purchases will help steady the ship, not necessarily all on the pitch at once right now, but Roque Mesa can be instrumental as replacement for Nenega who will be out for around 2 weeks, and Sandro as cover or sub for Muriel as he has a lot of work rate much like Muriel, Ben Yedder will suffer because he does not run and work like the others and Montella system relies on high pressure and closing.
As for the defence, i’d keep it same with Mercado sitting in next to Lenglet for now, Pareja is experienced but cannot cover the ground like he used to although his reading of the game has been his spotlight during his career.
As for Vazquez, I am not a great lover of him, he always seems like he’s shattered from the start of games & just glides around like he’s out walking his dog on a Sunday stroll, I don’t know what the coach’s see in him so maybe he works hard in training but for me i’d like to see Ganso given a chance but doubt that will happen any time soon…


You say if we “continue to progress like we are…” I am not sure we are progressing when it comes to the league? Since Montella has came in we have W 1 D 1 and L 3 in the league, conceding 12 scoring 8

After Español away I was quite excited that we had turned the corner, but failing to see off Getafe and then the humiliation by Eibar I am more likely to look below us in the table than above.

We have been fortunate that Valencia have had a poor run of form, but I doubt that will continue for very long.

If in the next couple of games he can turn that around to W 3 D 1 L 3 then I will be a bit more optimistic.

It would be fine if we just treated EVERY game like a cup tie :slight_smile:

Athletic Bilbao being held 0-0 by Las Palmas, 15 minutes remaining…

If it stays the same they will be 5 points behind us in 13th place

Forget the derby game, that was a pointless exercise…I mean if we transfer the cup form into the league. We are getting there but last week was learning curve that Montella knows he got wrong by chucking the new players straight in.
I mean that if we play the same way, using same players changing 1 or 2 we can maintain the same level of performance…

I can see the enforced change being a straight swap of Pizarro for Benega and then keeping the same other 10 that started against Leganes. Hopefully Montella saw enough of Pareja last week to realise that this guy is past it.
As jonjar says this is a big game and a must win on Sunday, it’s getting very tight around the 6th- 11th places. I feel the time to rest a couple of players will be the following game away to Las Palmas before the Man utd game.

We then have 4 very big liga games coming up this next few weeks.

Atletico home
Malaga away
Athletic home
Valencia home

These 4 games could play a big part in where we finish. Win 3 out of 4 of these and I will be ecstatic.


La liga have changed the dates of Sevilla - Real Madrid and Barcelona scheduled for April 21/22 to the 9th May. This comes just two days before they meet with Sevilla and Barcelona to agree the venue for the cup final.

They have in effect removed a major obstacle to changing the date of the cup final which would have seen both Betis and Sevilla fans in Madrid if the venue were to be Wanda Metropolitana.
What is going on, I are they configuring for or against Wanda M?

Alaves leading Villarreal 0-1, ref blow your whistle now.

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Alaves win 2-1 We are still waiting for Barca to decide when and where they would like to play the final.


Winning this and the one vs. Las Palmas next week would be a good start to something good. If we fail to get 6 points in the next 2 matches, then we can only hope to remain in the EL places for the next season.

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More important now that we win against Girona. Eibar have just beaten Leganes earlier this evening 1-0 with a goal in the 94th minute to go 2points ahead and push us down to 7th. If we lose & Celta beat Espanyol we are down to 9th, possibly 10th if Betis beat Depor on Monday.

Big 3 pointer today, and with Villareal slipping up, it would be nice for Valencia to have a little stutter later tonight and that would set us up nicely over next few games to get back in the CL chasing pack…Gotta think positively :wink:

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Line up is in. Same starting XI as cup game with Pizarro replacing Banega

Rico sav … save a penalty !?

The second half was a bit dull, but 3 points are 3 points and one could tell the team was a bit exhausted from the semis of CDR. This is a brilliant first team line up, though obviously we’ve missed Banega a lot.

Probably Rico’s performance of the career today… I hope this gives him enough momentum to carry on like this until the end of the season before we sign a goalie to seriously compete with him.

Next week’s match vs. Las Palmas in the Canary will be the calm before the storm, starting with Man Utd, so a victory would’ve been great there, or at least not losing!


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P.S. Hopefully Muriel’s hamstring injury is nothing more than grade 1 which takes a couple of days up to a week to heal so he’ll be ready for the CL clash. It didn’t look to bad but fingers crossed on that one. We will need Muriel a lot in the important matches as he has turned into an absolute beast recently!

Another great win! We need to keep fighting in all competitions! Keep our momentum going especially for the big last 16 tie with Man Utd!

Vamos Sevilla!

Just watched the highlights.

Rico was stunning. And holy shit what a ball by Lenglet.

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Seen the highlights too. Rico was man of the match. Fair play to him. He’s had a few poor games but he well and truly made up for it!

Very happy for him. Plus an important win for the team!

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Not the greatest of games you’ll ever watch but a game where 1 person had to raise their game and inspire the others to victory, today that man was Rico!
We were solid, and like most other teams that come to the RSP, they never really looked like they wanted 3 points but sole mission was to play out for a draw and hope to snatch something, which nearly happened, nobody appealed their penalty that I seen and the ref’s lately don’t seem to be wanting to give a lot our way…hope that changes soon though!

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Had to watch a late recording of this match, and madre mia what a game by Rico! I don’t think he’s saved a penalty since… NEVER!? He won us those 3 points as opposed to giving 2 away with that blunder vs Getafe. Way to turn things around Rico. Give this man an In-Form card!

Like y’all mentioned, it wasn’t the greatest of games, but i’m starting to see the players getting more familiar with one another. They’re finding it easier to get in dangerous pockets of space in the opposition’s territory. Muriel has regained his confidence and is running at these defenders, Sarabia is constantly getting himself on the scoresheet (one way or another), and Lenglet seems to have picked up a thing or two from Pareja with that pass over the defence.

Rico had a great game in goal, but at the same time it’s scary if we gave up those chances to the likes or Lukaku, Sanchez or Martial. This is still a work in progress, so i’ll take these results game by game. Las Palmas will offer a different challenge, and i’m sure Mesa will compete his hardest in training this week to start in that fixture. Guido did his best to give the midfield a different look today, but i feel Mesa could provide more. Appearance aside, Nzonzi & Guido have far too similar profiles for that double pivot to be dynamic. But again, let’s see what happens. We’re gaining ground on 5th place, and still in the fight for 4th. We can do this.