LaLiga Matchweek 16 preview: Sevilla vs. Villarreal (17:00h. CET) - Team news, possible lineups

Arguably the standout fixture in the next set of La Liga matches will take place at Estadio Ramon on Tuesday afternoon as Sevilla welcome Villarreal.

Sevilla are currently sixth in Spain's top flight, having picked up 23 points from their 13 matches this season, while Villarreal are fourth, three points ahead of their opponents in this game.

Match preview

Sevilla have won seven, drawn two and lost four of their 13 La Liga matches this season, with a total of 23 points leaving them in sixth position in the table, three points behind fourth-placed Villarreal.

It is difficult to pay too much attention to the standings at this stage, though, as Sevilla have only played 13 times, while Real Sociedad in third have already had 16 league games this term. All things considered, Julen Lopetegui's side can be pleased with their opening to the 2020-21 campaign despite some early-season issues.

The Europa League holders, who will be eyeing another top-four finish, are unbeaten in their last five matches in all competitions, winning four, including a 1-0 victory at Valencia on December 22.

Sevilla have won five of their last seven in La Liga, meanwhile, but they have not actually overcome Villarreal in Spain's top flight since November 2017 and suffered a 2-1 defeat in the corresponding game in 2019-20.

Villarreal, as mentioned, are currently fourth in the table, having collected 26 points from their opening 15 matches courtesy of six wins and eight draws.

The Yellow Submarine have only suffered one league defeat this season - the same as leaders Atletico Madrid - but they have actually shared the points in five of their last six in Spain's top flight.

Unai Emery's side recorded a 3-1 win at Osasuna in their last away match on December 19 but were then held to a 1-1 draw by Athletic Bilbao in their last game on December 22.

Villarreal have managed to advance to the knockout round of the Europa League, where they will take on Red Bull Salzburg, while progression in the Copa del Rey was secured courtesy of a 6-0 win over Leioa.

Like Sevilla, El Submarino Amarillo will have their eyes on a top-four finish in La Liga this season, and it would be a statement of intent if they managed to triumph at Estadio Ramon on Tuesday.

Sevilla La Liga form: WWLWDW
Sevilla form (all competitions): LWWWDW

Villarreal La Liga form: DDDDWD
Villarreal form (all competitions): WDDWWD

Team News

Sevilla will again be without the services of Tomas Vaclik and Sergio Escudero through injury, while experienced midfielder Fernando is likely to miss out due to an ankle injury.

Ivan Rakitic is expected to return to the midfield, potentially in place of Fernando, meaning that Oscar Rodriguez should keep his spot alongside Joan Jordan.

Munir El Haddadi is over a recent injury, but Suso could again feature in the final third of the field, while there might be an alteration at the tip of the attack with Luuk de Jong potentially dropping out for Youssef En-Nesyri.

As for Villarreal, Francis Coquelin, Vicente Iborra, Paco Alcacer, Alberto Moreno and Carlos Bacca remain on the sidelines, while Mario Gaspar picked up a knee injury against Athletic and could also miss out.

Ruben Pena is in line for a start at right-back, while Pervis Estupinan could line up on the left of the defence.

On-loan Tottenham Hotspur defender Juan Foyth started in midfield last time out and that could again be the case in this match, while Fer Nino and Moi Gomez are likely to join Gerard Moreno in the final third of the field.

Sevilla possible starting lineup:
Bounou; Navas, Kounde, Carlos, Acuna; Rakitic, Torres, Jordan; Ocampos, En-Nesyri, Suso

Villarreal possible starting lineup:
Asenjo; Pena, Albiol, Torres, Estupinan; Trigueros, Foyth, Parejo; G Moreno, Nuno, Gomez

Source: Sports Mole / Matt Law 




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