Sampaoli faces Shakespeare
I've been told that the Sevilla expedition in Leicester are in a confident mood: “Didn't they vote for Brexit? We'll do our bit on helping them on their way out of Europe”, joked one supporter on the flight to England. Sevilla are undergoing a great spell as a club having won five Europa League,(UEFA Cup) titles in the past decade. Their silverware haul also includes a Copa del Rey title and a UEFA and Spanish Super Cup. All won to the centenary soundtrack provided by local musician El Arrebato. The average Sevilla fan is now accustomed to travelling in a confident mood and returning euphoric and this is the case of the 2.000 fans who make the trip to Leicester.
The pre-match odds also tilt towards the Spanish side making it through to the quarter finals. Sevilla progressing pays at 1,28 per euro invested with Leicester being in Friday's draw providing a return of €3,75 per invested euro. Sampaoli admitted that his side were not at their best in the home draw against Leganés on Saturday whilst Leicester are on the up. Ranieri, the man who guided the Foxes to last season's historic Premier League win was ousted and has been replaced by Craig Shakespeare. Shakespeare never made the grade as a player in the top flight and has only previously coached in a caretaker or assistant capacity. His appointment has seen a positive response from the team with two wins from two in his time in charge.
Objective UCL progression
The scoreline (2-1) is also cause for mild concern. The result from the first leg could have easily been 3-0 or more but Vardy's goal keeps the tie very much in the balance. I do feel that Sevilla are a superior side to the Premier League outfit and the objective for the Andalusian side is to go far in this season's edition of the Champions League. A Sevilla board member claimed to me last summer: "We won't win the Europa League this season ...but watch us do well in the Champions League”. The immediate task at the King Power Stadium for the Spanish side is to put a hold on Mahrez, Vardy and co.
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