Sevilla and Man Utd targeting another Europa League final
When Sevilla outclassed and knocked Manchester United out of the Champions League in 2018, the performance and famous football heritage fallout afterwards was considered the nadir of the Jose Mourinho era at Old Trafford. On Hollywoodbet you can bet on this match with the best odds among other bookmakers.
The landscape has shifted considerably since then however, and with things looking infinitely more positive under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, United have a chance to show how far they have come against the same opposition in the semi-final of this season’s Europa League. Using the analytical data of the Betway platform, you can place a profitable bet on the victory of one of the teams.
Sevilla, unbeaten in hugely impressive 19 game since early February, come armed with an established technical and tactical nous that this new-look United are still searching for however, and the battle-hardened La Liga outfit should prove the toughest of tests for Solskjaer’s youthful Red Devils.
The possession hungry and defensively robust Los Nervionenses arrive in Sunday’s semi fresh from superb successive performances against Roma and Wolves in the Last 16 and quarter finals respectively, beating both opponents to nil in the UEL knockout rounds.
Sevilla have now conceded just once in 720 minutes of football (eight games) and Julen Lopetegui’s unbreachable looking backline blueprint will be key to their chances of success again this weekend.
United will need to be at their best
Manchester United meanwhile, needed a penalty kick winner in extra time from Bruno Fernandes to squeeze their way past dogged Danes Copenhagen in the quarter finals, though their passage might have been smoother had opposition goalkeeper Karl Johnsson not had the game of his life.
The stopper made 13 saves in total to keep the score down in Cologne, while United hit the woodwork an incredible four times despite not being at their fluid best.
Solskjaer’s side haven’t been hitting all the right notes for quite a while now, and United have looked worryingly leggy and noticeably fatigued since their 2-2 Premier League draw with Southampton a full seven matches ago.
United had cruised through the Europa League’s group stage and early knock-out rounds, scoring 24 times and keeping a notable eight clean sheets in 11 assignments, however, a huge improvement in recent performances is needed on Sunday against a Sevilla team several levels above any side they have met so far.
Cagey affair anticipated in Cologne
Sunday’s semi final pits two clubs armed with lengthy stretches of excellent results against each other, when Sevilla put their 19-match unbeaten streak on the line against a United team that were turned over just once in their last 24 fixtures in all competitions.
With Sevilla happy to rotate the ball in midfield and United almost certainly preparing to adopt a counter-attacking approach, chances to score could be limited this weekend, and we expect that to be reflected in the final scoreline.
Sevilla are notoriously tough to break down, as evidenced by a record that shows seven clean sheets in their last eight matches, though they are also modest goalscorers at the other end, hitting the net two or fewer times in 16 out of 19 matches during their unbeaten run.
Under 2.5 goals the way to go
With those statistics telling, it won’t surprise you to learn that under 2.5 goals rattled the net in six of Sevilla’s last seven matches and in 13 of their last 19 games overall – and we think that market is worth considering again for Sunday’s semi-final.
United – who mustered two or fewer goals in each of their last seven games – aren’t quite clicking in attack like they did just after club football’s resumption in June, but with Harry Maguire marshalling their backline, they conceded one or fewer goals in five of those seven contest, and the Red Devils are unlikely to be torn to shreds by a routinely cautious Sevilla outfit.
With chances set to be at a premium, backing under 2.5 total goals to be scored in what promises to be a tense semi-final skirmish looks a smart move, though our correct score prediction tips Sevilla to eventually carve out a 1-0.
Their incredible collection of seven clean sheets in eight games shines a light on just how tough Sevilla are to open up, and after back-to-back defensive masterclass performances against Roma and Wolves, Los Nervionenses can lean on their watertight rearguard to secure their place in the Europa League final for the fourth time in seven seasons.