MX23RW : Saturday, July 21 17:13:04
Dec 9, 2017 at 3.15pm UK at ​Estadio Santiago Bernabéu (Madrid)
Attendance: 76,924
Real Madrid
Nacho (3'), Ronaldo (23', 31' pen.), Kroos (38'), Hakimi (42')
FT(HT: 5-0)

Navas (31'), Banega (37')

Preview: Real Madrid vs. Sevilla – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides predicted lineups, team news and a full match preview of Saturday's La Liga clash between Real Madrid and Sevilla.

Fourth will host fifth in La Liga on Saturday night as the champions Real Madrid welcome Sevilla to the Bernabeu for what should be a fascinating affair.

Both teams have collected 28 points from 14 league matches this season, and the pressure will be firmly on Real Madrid to close the gap on league leaders Barcelona, who are sitting pretty at the top of the table.

Real Madrid

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane watches on on November 1, 2017© SilverHub

Real Madrid will look to bounce back from what was a disappointing goalless draw at Athletic Bilbao last weekend when they welcome Sevilla to the Bernabeu.

Zinedine Zidane's side have actually only won two of their last five in the league, and that run of form has left them down in fourth position in the table – eight points off the leaders Barcelona, who are still unbeaten this season.

Los Blancos have dropped points in six of their 14 league matches this term, and there is no question that they have struggled to reach the heights of the 2017-18 campaign. It is a difficult period for the champions, although a win on Saturday would see them cut Barcelona's lead to five points.

Considering that Barcelona face a tough trip to Villarreal on Sunday night, Real Madrid might well be in touching distance of their rivals when the pair clash in El Clasico at the Bernabeu before the winter break.

Cristiano Ronaldo created more Champions League history on Wednesday night when he scored in Madrid's 3-2 win over Borussia Dortmund. Indeed, the Portuguese became the first player in the history of the competition to score in all six matches of a group-stage campaign.

The number seven has only netted twice in La Liga this term, however, and with Gareth Bale's injury problems showing no signs of ending, the Madrid giants have had a problem finding the back of the net. Indeed, Zidane's side have only scored 25 times in their 14 matches, which is just the third-best attacking record at this stage.

Los Blancos have won their last four league matches on home soil, however, and will fancy their chances of putting another three points on the board this weekend as they look to prevent Barcelona from moving further clear at the summit.

Recent form: WLWDWD
Recent form (all competitions): WWWDDW


Luis Muriel in action during the Champions League game between Liverpool and Sevilla on September 13, 2017© Offside

Like Real Madrid, Sevilla were also in Champions League action on Wednesday night, and a 1-1 draw against Maribor ensured that the Spanish outfit would finish second in Group E, booking their spot in the round of 16 in the process.

That secured, Sevilla can now fully focus on La Liga, and they will enter Saturday's match at the Bernabeu having won their last three in Spain's top flight. Indeed, since losing narrowly at Barcelona, the White and Reds have beaten Celta Vigo, Villarreal and Deportivo La Coruna.

A record of nine wins, one draw and four defeats from 14 matches has left them in fifth position in the table on 28 points. They would go above Real Madrid with a win this weekend, and will fancy their chances of making another strong challenge for a top-four finish despite Valencia's brilliant form and the staying power of Atletico Madrid.

Sevilla were recently hit with the news that head coach Eduardo Berizzo had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. The Argentine is currently on the road to recovery, however, after undergoing an operation last week. Berizzo was discharged from hospital on December 2, with his post-operative recovery taking place at home.

There is no question that the 48-year-old will be watching on this weekend, and Sevilla will have another incentive to pick up a positive result in the capital.

Considering that Sevilla have lost just once – away to Barcelona - in all competitions since October 21, suspension-hit Madrid will have to be at their best to secure all the points.

As expected, Sevilla's home record this season has been very strong – winning six of their seven league matches at the Estadio Ramon. Berizzo's side have lost four of their seven league games on the road, however, and will be the underdogs at the Bernabeu on Saturday afternoon.

Recent form: LWLWWW
Recent form (all competitions): WDWWWD

Team News

Harry Kane and Sergio Ramos in action during the Champions League group game between Real Madrid and Tottenham Hotspur on October 17, 2017© Offside

Casemiro, Sergio Ramos and Dani Carvajal are all suspended for Real Madrid, while Raphael Varane could also miss out after limping out of the clash with Dortmund on Wednesday night.

Jesus Vallejo is expected to make a timely return from a thigh problem, however, and the 20-year-old could be joined at centre-back by Nacho, meaning that Achraf Hakimi would come into the XI at right-back.

Mateo Kovacic is also in line to start after appearing against Dortmund, while Marcelo, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric and Karim Benzema will all return after sitting out Wednesday's European match at the Bernabeu.

As for Sevilla, David Soria, Franco Vazquez, Nolito and Johannes Geis should all return to the team after sitting out the clash with Maribor.

Jesus Navas is also pushing for a position in the XI due to his counter-attacking abilities, but Wissam Ben Yedder, who is the team's joint-top scorer in the league this season, will keep his spot at centre-forward ahead of Luis Muriel.

Real Madrid possible starting lineup:
Navas; Achraf, Nacho, Vallejo, Marcelo; Kroos, Kovacic, Modric; Ronaldo, Benzema, Isco

Sevilla possible starting lineup:
Soria; Mercado, Geis, Lenglet, Escudero; Vazquez, Pizarro, Banega; Navas, Ben Yedder, Sarabia

Head To Head

Real Madrid recorded a 4-1 win when the pair met at the Bernabeu last season, although Sevilla beat Los Blancos 2-1 at the Estadio Ramon back in January.

Sevilla have actually not won in the league at the Bernabeu since December 2008, which is an indication of their task this weekend.

That said, two of the last five matches between the two teams in all competitions have finished level, with Real Madrid winning just twice in that period – both at the Bernabeu.

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We say: Real Madrid 2-0 Sevilla

Sevilla will enter the match off the back of a fine run of form in La Liga, and all of the pressure will be on Real Madrid to close the gap on Barcelona.

The visitors will fancy their chances of causing a few problems, but Zidane's side should have enough to return to winning ways following their disappointing goalless draw at Athletic Bilbao last weekend.

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