Sevilla host Roma in the Europa League final at Budapest’s Puskás Aréna on Wednesday night. The Spanish side have lifted this trophy on six occasions and have never lost a final in this competition with their last success as recently as 2020. Roma won last season’s UEFA Europa Conference League and coach Jose Mourinho has won all five of his European finals. Something has to give in to this one.
Sevilla’s season turned around when Jose Luis Mendilibar replace Jorge Sampaoli as coach. He has overseen 15 matches with just two defeats and the side have gone from 17th to 11th in La Liga with a chance of still finishing in the top seven. They reached this stage by beating Man Utd 5-2 on aggregate. They came 2-0 down to draw at Old Trafford and then won 3-0 at home. After the second leg, three wins in four matches followed in La Liga to end any relegation fears.
A last-gasp goal conceded saw them draw in the Europa League semi-final first leg 1-1 at Juventus. After a 3-0 win at Real Valladolid with a much-changed team, they beat Juve 2-1 after extra time in the second leg to reach the final. Since that match, they’ve had two league draws including 1-1 at Elche as they played 72 minutes with ten men. Sevilla were beaten 2-1 at home by Real Madrid on Saturday.
Sevilla Team News
In goal, Yassine Bounou is set to start this final having been the selected ‘keeper in this competition ahead of Serie A number one Marko Dmitrovic. Alex Telles is set to start at left-back with Marcos Acuna sitting out through suspension.
Midfielder Joan Jordan appeared from the bench against Real Madrid after injury. Suso should also be fit and Tanguy Nianzou could make the squad after his injury. Youssef En-Nesyri will start up front in place of Rafa Mir after being an unused sub on Saturday. Erik Lamela will hope to start having scored the winner in the semi-final second leg.
Sevillistas Los Rojiblancos will be very eager to lift this trophy for a seventh time as a club. Many of these players were not part of the 2019-20 squad and are eager for silverware.
Sevilla will play quite an attacking game and will know that they’re going to have around 65% possession or even more. There is also the carrot of a place in the UEFA Champions League for the winner.
AS Roma Form
Roma are having a poor finish to the Serie A season and their top-four hopes have long evaporated. They sit sixth and could only finish as high as fifth. After beating Feyenoord 4-1 at home to reach the Europa League semi-finals, they took just two points from their next four league matches. A 1-0 home win against Bayer Leverkusen in the semi-final first leg saw them have just 38% possession at home.
After a 0-0 draw at Bologna, they drew 0-0 away to Leverkusen to reach the final. They were outshot 23-1 and had just 28% possession in that match. They scored late to draw 2-2 at home with Salernitana. In their weekend fixture, Roma lost 2-1 at Fiorentina with a heavily-changed team featuring only three regular starters.
AS Roma Team News
Jose Mourinho has Chris Smalling fit again and he has started the last two matches. This return at the heart of the back three will allow Bryan Cristante to move back into central midfield alongside Nemanja Matic. Rui Patricio will return in goal after his weekend rest.
Forward Paulo Dybala is set to play some part in the match after injury, but likely only from the bench at best. Leonardo Spinazzola is another injured player who will return in time to start this one at left wingback. Right wingback Rick Karsdorp and centre back Marash Kumbulla are both out injured.
AS Roma Motivation
Roma and Mourinho will be desperate to win this match. They will play super pragmatically and could have 30% of the ball or even less. They will sit back, use a risk-averse game and hope for a goal on a counter attack or a set play.
Mourinho has spoken of his focus being totally on winning this cup and not only the UEFA Champions League qualification it offers. He has been resting players for weeks to focus on this competition.
Sevilla have won their last 5 home European matches
Sevilla have scored 13 goals in their last 5 home matches in Europe
Sevilla have lost just twice in 15 matches under their current coach
Sevilla have won all six of their previous Europa League finals
Roma are winless in 4 away Europa League matches (LDLD), without scoring a goal
Roma have won just 1 of their last 9 matches (D5, L3)
Roma coach Mourinho has won five major European titles with no defeats in finals
This is set to be a very tight match. It’s a risk to bet against Mourinho in European finals whilst this feels like Sevilla’s competition. Not many goals are likely and the 90 minutes may not see both sides on target. If either team scores in regulation play, it could finish 1-0 or extra time may be needed after a 0-0 draw.
Best Bet: Both Teams to Score NO (90 mins) at 1.74
Alternative Bet: Under 1.5 goals (90 mins) at 2.45
Value Bet: AS Roma to win by 1 goal (90 mins) at 3.95