Tip Sevilla - Roma
One of the glamour ties of the round of 16 in the Europa League sees Sevilla hosting AS Roma for the first leg of their tie. Sevilla have an incredible pedigree in this competition, winning it five times, all wins occurring this century. The most recent win was in 2016, the third consecutive triumph under Unai Emery. Roma, meanwhile, while also regarded as European heavyweights, have never been crowned the winners of a continental competition. They finished runners-up in both the Champions League and Europa League but both occurrences were several decades ago. There have been modest successes for Roma in Europe in recent seasons such as reaching the semi-finals of the UCL in 2018, knocking out Barcelona with a memorable comeback along the way. The Italian side made it to this stage this time around thanks to a narrow 2-1 aggregate win over Gent in the Round of 32. Sevilla had to squeeze through an even tighter passage, progressing (1-1) on away goals from their clash with CRF Cluj.
In many ways, the outings of the previous round typify both sides, progress without being particularly convincing. Sevilla have failed to win four of their last six league outings, an identical record to Roma. Despite it, the Andalucian club are third in La Liga while Roma are fighting for a Champions League in Serie A, three points off fourth-placed Atalanta. A competitive team that creates plenty of openings and dominates possession, Sevilla suffer because of the absence of a finisher. Lucas Ocampos is the only player in their squad to hit double figures in all competitions this season with ten goals. Scoring goals isn't a problem for Roma but defending could be improved upon, particularly when it comes to protecting the midfield. We see Sevilla having the upper hand in this fixture but don't expect them to blow Roma. Back a low-scoring first encounter.
Key points Sevilla - Roma
Sevilla have failed to win four of their last league fixtures.
AS Roma have failed to win four of their last league fixtures.
Roma have failed to win 23 of their 34 UEFA encounters with Spanish clubs.
Conclusion Sevilla - Roma
A lot of the time, a low-scoring prediction can be a warning to brace yourself for boredom. We don't expect that to be the case here. There will be a number of players on the pitch capable of lighting up this occasion. Henrikh Mkhitaryan has created three goals and scored two in his last three games. If he's fit, he could be a good goalscorer bet. Otherwise, back under 2.5 goals.
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Sevilla Roma Prediction published on March 11, 2020