Big Match Feature: Leicester v Sevilla

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By Salawudeen Olawale

Leicester City will hope for another famous night of Champions League football when they host Sevilla in the second leg of their round of 16 tie on Tuesday.

The English champions revived their hopes thanks to Jamie Vardy’s first Champions League goal in Seville. The home side had led 2-0 thanks to goals from Pablo Sarabia and Joaquín Correa, who on his first start in the competition had had an early penalty saved by Kasper Schmeichel.

That game proved to be the last in charge of Leicester for Claudio Ranieri, however, who was dismissed the following day.

The tournament newcomers reached this stage as Group G winners while Sevilla secured their third last-16 participation in the last decade as Group H runners-up behind Juventus.

Match Background

Leicester

Leicester have a 100% home record in this season’s competition, having beaten FC Porto (1-0), FC København (1-0) and Club Brugge KV (2-1) in the group stage.

The English title holders have won only one of their four previous two-legged European ties – 7-2 (aggregate) v Glenavon FC in the 1961/62 European Cup Winners’ Cup preliminary round.

Two of the Foxes’ three previous European campaigns ended against Spanish opposition. Atlético Madrid eliminated them from both the 1961/62 Cup Winners’ Cup first round (1-1 h, 0-2 a) and the 1997/98 UEFA Cup first round (1-2 a, 0-2 h).

That 1997 Atlético defeat is also the only previous occasion Leicester have lost an away first leg.

Leicester have never been involved in a penalty shoot-out in UEFA competition.

Sevilla

Jorge Sampaoli’s team are looking to make the last eight of Europe’s elite club competition for the first time since their inaugural continental campaign in 1957/58. That run was curtailed by a heavy quarter-final loss to eventual winners Real Madrid CF (0-8 a, 2-2 h).

Sevilla lost on the two previous occasions they competed in the round of 16 of the Champions League — against Fenerbahçe SK in 2008 (5-5 agg, 2-3 pens) and PFC CSKA Moskva in 2010 (2-3 agg).

Sevilla lost just one of seven European away fixtures played in 2016 (W2, D4). They did not concede in any of their three Group H games on the road – winning at GNK Dinamo Zagreb (1-0) and drawing at Juventus and Olympique Lyonnais (both 0-0).

The Andalusian side have never won in England (D2, L2). In last season’s group stage, they took a 1-0 lead at Manchester City FC through Yevhen Konoplyanka but ultimately were beaten by an Adil Rami own goal and a 91stminute Kevin De Bruyne strike.

Their sole previous two-legged knockout tie against Premier League opposition brought a 4-3 aggregate success (2-1 h, 2-2 a) against Tottenham Hotspur FC in the 2006/07 UEFA Cup quarterfinals.

Sevilla overcame Liverpool FC 3-1 in the final of last term’s Europa League in Basel and also saw off Middlesbrough FC 4-0 in the 2006 final.

Sevilla have won all but one of the 18 UEFA competition ties in which they won the home first leg, the sole exception being against 1. FC Kaiserslautern in the 1982/83 UEFA Cup third round (1-0 home, 0-4 away).

Those 17 aggregate victories include two contests in which the home first leg finished 2-1 to Sevilla, with both second legs ending 2-2: that 2007 tie against Tottenham and against FC Zenit in the 2014/15 UEFA Europa League quarterfinals.

Sevilla’s penalty shoot-out record in UEFA competition is W5, L1:

  • 4-3 v PAOK FC (1990/91 UEFA Cup first round)
  • 3-1 v RCD Espanyol (2006/07 UEFA Cup final)
  • 2-3 v Fenerbahçe SK (2007/08 UEFA Champions League round of 16)
  • 4-3 v Real Betis Balompié (2013/14 UEFA Europa League round of 16)
  • 4-2 v SL Benfica (2013/14 UEFA Europa League final)
  • 5-4 v Athletic Club (2015/16 UEFA Europa League quarterfinals)

Coach and player links

Steven N’Zonzi took on Leicester three times with Stoke City FC (W2 L1).

Samir Nasri won his two matches against Leicester with Man. City – both away from home.

Leonardo Ulloa came off the bench to play Sevilla twice with UD Almería in the 2010/11 Spanish top flight – a 3-1 away victory in December 2010 and a 1-0 home reverse the following May.

Wilfred Ndidi netted home and away against another Spanish side, Athletic Club, for former club KRC Genk in this season’s UEFA Europa League group stage.

Stevan Jovetic scored past Schmeichel in his Montenegro team’s 2-1 defeat in Denmark in a June 2015 friendly.

With Fiorentina he struck twice against Liverpool in a Champions League group stage victory (2-0) in 2009/10.

Jovetic did not face Leicester during his two seasons in England with Man. City (2013–15, 30 league appearances, eight goals).

Christian Fuchs registered in FC Schalke 04’s 4-3 triumph at Real Madrid in the 2014/15 round of 16, albeit Schalke still lost 5-4 on aggregate.

Daniel Carriço made three Premier League appearances for Reading FC in 2012/13.

Have played together: Steven N’Zonzi & Robert Huth (Stoke City, 2012–14)

International team-mates: Michael Krohn-Dehli & Kasper Schmeichel (Denmark) Match Facts

Leicester

Huth and Islam Slimani are a booking away from a ban.

The English champions, not in action at the weekend, prepared for the second leg with a three-day training camp in Dubai, returning home on 8 March.

Leicester parted company with Ranieri the day after the first leg in Seville. Under the caretaker guidance of Craig Shakespeare, the Foxes have since beaten Liverpool and Hull City AFC 3-1. On Sunday, Shakespeare was confirmed in charge for the rest of the season.

The Liverpool victory was Leicester’s first in the league since 31 December. It was also their first league goals in that six-game run.

Leicester have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 12 matches.

Sevilla

Vicente Iborra and Nicolás Pareja are a booking away from a suspension, while Gabriel Mercado returns from a one-match ban.

Sevilla are eight games unbeaten in all competitions, winning five of them, although they have drawn their last two matches 1-1.

Source: UEFA.com

 

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