After weeks of anticipation, La Liga is back in action with Sevilla kicking off the return in a derby game against Real Betis on Thursday night.
Sevilla are having the better season of the two Seville clubs, currently sitting third in La Liga and in control of their hunt for a return to the Champions League. Los Nervionenses haven’t been in Europe’s premier club competition since 2017/18 when they reached the quarter-finals but just five points separate them and seventh-placed Valencia.
Meanwhile, Betis are languishing in mid-table after a difficult season, with their defence particularly poor – only two clubs have conceded more goals than Los Verdiblancos in La Liga this season. Despite there still being 11 games to play, Betis appear to be one of a small group of teams who have very little on the line – too far away to realistically challenge for a European spot and fairly safe from relegation.
But Betis will not want to take that frame of mind into Thursday’s derby, with Sevilla looking to complete the double of their rivals for the first time since 2016/17, having won the reverse fixture 2-1.
Where to watch Sevilla v Real Betis on TV:
- UK: LaLigaTV
- US: beIN 1HD
Sevilla & Real Betis’ previous line-ups:
- Sevilla (vs Atletico Madrid): Vaclik; Navas, Kounde, Carlos, Reguilon; Gudelj*; Suso, Jordan, Banega, Ocampos; De Jong.
- Real Betis (vs Real Madrid): Joel; Emerson, Bartra, Sidnei, Moreno; Joaquin, Gonzalez, Guardado, Canales; Fekir; Moron.
Sevilla will be without midfielder Nemanja Gudelj who is suspended after picking up his fifth yellow card before La Liga’s suspension.
Players to watch:
- Sevilla: Lucas Ocampos. One of Sevilla’s stars of their season so far has been Ocampos, who is enjoying his first season in Spain after moving from Marseille in the summer. The Argentinian is Sevilla’s top scorer in La Liga, netting 10 so far this season, five more than any other player and was in fine form before the league was suspended. Ocampos has scored in each of his past four league appearances for Sevilla, helping the club remain unbeaten during that period, winning two and drawing two. Should Ocampos find the net in the derby on Thursday, it would make him the first Sevilla player to score in five consecutive top-flight games since Alvaro Negredo (six) in 2011.
- Real Betis: Nabil Fekir. Betis have not been good away from home this season, winning just one of their 13 games on the road so far. That form has been markedly worse in 2020, with the club scoring just three times in their five matches. At the heart of each of those three goals has been Fekir, who scored one and set up the other two. It has been an interesting first season in La Liga for Fekir, who joined from Lyon last summer having previously been linked with a move to Liverpool. The Frenchman is one of three Betis players to have been directly involved in at least 10 La Liga goals this season, scoring seven and recording three assists in 22 appearances. His performances on the pitch have seen Fekir already linked with a move away from Betis, with the likes of Barcelona and Arsenal reportedly interested.
Scoreline prediction: Sevilla 1-0 Real Betis
|June 11, 2020||11:00 am||La Liga||2020||90'|
|Ramón Sánchez Pizjuan|
|Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, 1, Avenida de Eduardo Dato, La Buhaira, Nervión, Seville, Sevilla, Andalusia, 41018, Spain|