Q&A with Sevilla fan and blogger Chris Lail
Are you impressed by this team’s start to the season?
This is an interesting question and one that has many Sevillistas in disagreement. I personally am happy with where we are in the standings 10 games into the season. Lopetegui inherited a team that has new faces at almost every position. With so many new faces and a new system, I don’t understand the issue some Sevilla fans have with where we are. I would love to score more goals and enjoy an exciting style of play — but as Atlético fans know, winning 1-0 is better than not winning.
1-0 is a way of life.
Sevilla made so many signings over the summer, but who do you feel has been the best or most impactful?
Welcome back, Monchi — and boy did he come back strong. Sevilla signed 13 players in the offseason and promoted two new Sevilla Atlético players while selling off or loaning out 20 players. It was a nutty offseason and I found myself having a hard time putting name to face during the summer tour in Dallas and Boston.
The most impactful offensive player has to be Lucas Ocampos, the 25-year-old Argentinian purchased from Marseille. With that said, our most important purchase in my opinion is the 32-year-old Brazilian, Fernando. He has started and played all 990 minutes of Sevilla’s Liga games so far. Unfortunately, he will miss the Atlético matchup due to yellow card accumulation.
How is our boy Óliver Torres getting on?
Óliver has done really well. He got on the score sheet earlier in the campaign against Eibar and had a brilliant assist last week against Getafe, setting up Chicharito. Lope seems to trust him.
Is this team good enough to get top four?
If they stay together and continue with the positive away results then yes. The talent is there. We have some concerns with our center back health at the moment, but our two young studs Diego Carlos and Jules Koundé are doing really well.
Sevilla and Atlético have played some pretty memorable games over the past several seasons. Got a favorite one?
I reached out to the guys on Monchi’s Men and here are some of their favorites:
Edinho: The 2010 Copa Del Rey final. Capel scored inside five minutes & Navas sealed the deal with a breakaway at the end.
SurreySevilla: The only one that springs to mind right now was the one when N’Zonzi scored at the RSP and we went top of LaLiga.
(Editor’s note: I remember that game quite well. Atlético were baaaad and lost their unbeaten start that day.)
TimSpence: The one in the Calderon where the bottle of Valentines whisky was launched at Palop, if that had happened in Sevilla they would have closed the stadium as punishment.
The cup final, because the TV commentator was an Atlético fan and he was almost crying when Navas broke the line and headed towards the goalkeeper.
The 2-5 in Sevilla where Banega lost the ball on the edge of the box and it went 0-1 after just 10 seconds of play.
ShendM: The ones where Diego Costa was being nasty and took a punch in the rib from Fazio…should’ve punched the bastard harder though. (I personally liked the last one as well. )
I’m sure you did...
Scoreline prediction for Saturday?
Assuming either team can score — which has been a struggle for us both — I think it will end 1-1.
Atlético Madrid and Sevilla are level on 20 points — with Atlético fourth based on a superior goal difference. The Rojiblancos could have tied Barcelona for first place on Tuesday, but Alavés had other ideas. The Basques snatched a point off of Atleti thanks to Lucas Peréz’s brilliant goal, but the capital club will crack the top three with a win on Saturday.
In eight league trips to Seville under Diego Simeone, the mattress makers have rung up four wins and three draws against one defeat. Diego Costa’s four goals in this fixture are the most of any player in the squad, but he is slated to start Saturday’s match on the bench.
Oblak; Trippier, Felipe, Hermoso, Lodi; Thomas, Saúl, Koke, Lemar; Correa, Morata.
3-1 Sevilla. The turnover in Atlético’s squad has not produced a remedy to the team’s longer-term issues winning games or even just performing well away from home in LaLiga. Simeone’s men have managed to hang around the top of the table despite notching two wins from the past eight league games — which is admirable enough and shows that there are good things going on here. Yet, one may get the sense that this rebuilding side — which is still without three key players — will soon get the smack to the jaw it needs, even if it ends hopes of a run at league title contention.
I think said haymaker happens here. Lopetegui’s possession-based play has more purpose now as his deep squad has started to click going forward. The Andalusians have lost just once out of the past seven in all competitions with just three goals conceded in that time. If Atleti approach this match in a way that even remotely resembles Tuesday’s draw at Alavés, it will be over quickly.
Jeremy’s record on the season: 8-6
How to watch
Date: Nov. 2, 2019
Location: Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, Sevilla, Andalusia, Spain
Kickoff time: 6:30 p.m. CET, 5:30 p.m. GMT, 1:30 p.m. EST, 10:30 a.m. PST
Available TV/streaming: Mitele Plus (Spain), LaLiga TV (United Kingdom), beIN Sports (United States), beIN Sports 2 (France), DAZN (Germany), ESPN (Argentina, Brazil), QQ Sports Live (China)