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Primera División

  • January 2, 2011
  • • 19:00
  • • Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, Sevilla
  • Referee: Alfonso Alvarez Izquierdo
  • • Attendance: 36500
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La Liga Preview: Sevilla - Osasuna

La Liga Preview: Sevilla - Osasuna

Los Nervionenses will hope for a fresh start against los Rojillos...

Six Of The Worst

It’s said that New Year is a time to make a new start, and struggling Sevilla will certainly hope this adage comes true for them. Expected to be challenging for a Champions League spot this season, the Andalucians are mired in the centre of the table and will need a remarkable second half to the campaign if they are to compete at the top. Osasuna, however, will hope to make progress of their own.

Gregorio Manzano was brought to the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan in October in order to inspire the team after an indifferent start to the campaign, but the former Mallorca coach hasn’t had the desire effect. Indeed, los Nervionenses have been getting worse, losing all of their last five Primera Division encounters, including a home encounter against local rivals Almeria.

“There have been many changes in the team, but the players need to take responsibility for the current situation,” Diego Capel told the Europa Press. “We hope that 2011 will begin with confidence. We must not look down, there is much of the league ahead and there are still many points to win.”

In the week prior to Christmas there were signs of hope. Against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu, the southerners were considered to be the better side by some distance but ultimately crashed to another disappointing defeat facing only 10 men. Then came a Copa del Rey match against Malaga, who were defeated 5-3.

With this recent improvement in mind, Sevilla shouldn’t feel too bad going into this important encounter.

Recent Toil

Only four points above the relegation zone, this season hasn’t passed smoothly for Osasuna either. The last time the side from Pamplona claimed three points was a mid-November encounter against Sporting de Gijon, and Jose Antonio Camacho has failed to lead his side to a solitary win away from home this season.

As a result, los Rojillos lie only four points clear of the relegation zone, though the rot was stopped to some extent prior to the Christmas break, when draws against Valencia and Zaragoza offered the club some comfort.

After the tie with Zaragoza, which came as something of a disappointment at the Reyno de Navarra, Camacho was left frustrated by his side’s inability to strike, blaming a lack of fortune and some poor refereeing for thwarting his side in their quest to earn maximum points. The performance level from Osasuna was certainly much-improved, and had they picked up the win, los Manos could not have quibbled.

Only twice have los Rojillos avoided defeat on their travels this season, though against a completely out-of-form Sevilla side, there should be legitimate hope that statistic can change.


TEAM NEWS

Sevilla

Ivica Dragutinovic and Federico Fazio are the only two players not training at all. Diego Perotti is still seeking full fitness. Mouhamadou Dabo is banned.

Osasuna


Nacho Monreal has undergone knee surgery and will miss around six weeks. Javad Nekounam and Masoud Shojaei are on international duty with Iran and will miss five matches. Walter Pandiani should return, while Javier Camunas and Rupert missed out a fortnight ago.

Players to watch

C. Romaric

Position: Midfielder

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Romaric is not a player necessarily known for his goal scoring abilities, but a brace against Malaga in the Copa del Rey prior to the Christmas break proved to be important for his side. The Ivoirian hasn’t always been a particular favourite at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, but if he continues on such a track, a few of his critics may be silenced.

Juanfran

Position: Defender

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Juanfran has been a player seriously linked with a move away from Osasuna in the winter transfer window. The winger came through the Real Madrid youth academy but is now considered a player worth in the region of €7 million. A player who is not likely to get his name on the scoresheet, he will instead provide much of the creative thrust in the Rojillos’ side.

Editor's Prediction

Sevilla’s recent form suggests that they will struggle to have enough to overcome an Osasuna side who haven’t looked comfortable on their travels. Gregorio Manzano’s side have been in dreadful touch of late, but they did hint at an improvement prior to Christmas and that could be enough to carry them to victory.

Think you know the score? Visit William Hill to bet on this match now.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Sevilla

Osasuna

Wins
4
0
1
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Sevilla FC SEV
Sevilla FC Sevilla
Draw
CA Osasuna OSA
CA Osasuna Osasuna
72%
21%

Top 3 Predictions

Sevilla FC SEV
2 - 0
CA Osasuna OSA
Sevilla FC SEV
2 - 1
CA Osasuna OSA
Sevilla FC SEV
1 - 1
CA Osasuna OSA

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