Sevilla are facing the second semi-final of the Europa League. It is just 180 minutes (more in the event of extra time) away from winning a historic seventh trophy in the second most prestigious club competition.
This season has been almost tragic. For a long time Sevilla struggled in the relegation battle, at times even staying on the relegation places.
It has replaced three coaches, sacked the successful Julen Lopetegui, who won the Europa League and also chased Real Madrid in the title fight last season.
Jorge Sampaoli was also sacked after just a few months, having failed to pull Sevilla out of the relegation fight.
It wasn’t until José Luis Mendilibar pulled the thorn out of the Andalusians’ side. After his arrival, he won six of his eight La Liga games, drew one and lost one. On top of that, he added a progression to the Europa League semi-finals over the favoured Manchester United.
In the semi-final, Sevilla drew 1-1 at Juventus and brought a promising result into the home rematch. The atmosphere at the Ramón Sanchez Pizjuán will once again be devilish, even for the Red Devils themselves.
“There is no euphoria among the players. If there is among the fans, well, let it show during the game. It’s a big game, but we can’t go crazy again,” Mendilibar told a news conference.
Sevilla holds the record for the most trophies in the Europa League – six. It is now just two games away from another trophy.
“We would love to win a seventh trophy, but we have to respect Juventus. It is a giant and few teams have achieved what they have,” the Sevilla coach added.
“I don’t think they want to lend us the ball. They will want to keep possession and hurt us. If anyone expects us to be in control of the game, we have to be patient,” Mendilibar suggested.
Source: Sevilla, UEFA
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