Sevilla went back to winning ways in La Liga with a 2-0 win over Valencia on Sunday, 16 April. In a game of two halves, with the first being boring and the second full of drama – Jose Luis Mendilibar’s side stayed cool under pressure and scored two smart goals to push Valencia even closer to relegation.
With the win, Sevilla ensured that they are going to go into the second leg of their UEFA Europa League quarter-finals against Manchester United with a lot of momentum on their side. Here is the complete timeline of the feisty La Liga clash.
5’: Buoyed by the energy of the home crowd, Valencia started the game in an all-guns-blazing fashion. The hosts had the first big chance of the game after dominating the opening exchange of the game. Right-back Dimitri Foulquier made a darting run into the box and was able to get in a vicious shot on target, forcing Sevilla goalkeeper Marko Dmitrovic to make a sharp save.
10’: Sevilla winger Lucas Ocampos was arguably his side’s most dangerous attacker in the first half and got his first chance in the 9th minute. He was able to find the ball inside the Valencia box but struck a fluffed shot straight at Giorgi Mamardashvili.
29’: Valencia striker Edinson Cavani made some clever movement in the box and kept the Sevilla defenders on their toes with his presence. Cavani got himself into an important area just before the half-hour mark but guided his open-range header over the bar.
33’: Cavani turned provider four minutes after that, as he was able to find young midfielder Illaix Moriba just outside the shot. Moriba lined up a shot but hit it too hard – resulting in the attempt soaring well over the goal.
48’: After a relatively cagey first half, Valencia started the second half with much more intensity. Jose Gaya started making darting runs through the left and got into a promising situation, minutes into the second half, sending in an inviting low cross to Younus Musah – whose shot was brilliantly blocked by Karim Rekik to avoid possible disaster.
55’: Just as it seemed like Valencia was gaining control of the game, Sevilla ended up taking the lead in a controversial fashion. A corner was swung into the middle, causing chaos in the Valencia box. Loic Bade managed to get the better of Musah in an exchange and capitalized on Moriba’s mistimed clearance, showcasing rapid reactions to slot a shot past the Valencia goalkeeper. The goal was checked by VAR as it appeared that Bade elbowed Moriba in the lead-up to it, but the referee ended up letting it stand – much to the fury of the Valencia supporters.
62’: The hosts were desperate to find a quick equalizer and had a big penalty shout just after the hour-mark. It appeared that a shot from Samu Castellejo struck Bade’s arm inside the box and Valencia demanded a penalty. The referee checked the footage on the VAR screen but did not deem it to be an intentional handball – shocking and further infuriating the simmering mood in the stadium.
63’: Anyone rooting for Valencia in the stadium couldn’t believe that the referee didn’t give a penalty. A member of the hosts’ coaching staff ended up using some disrespectful comments at the official, which saw them get sent off as a result.
72’: Sevilla went into protective mode after the opener and frustrated the hosts with a super-defensive stance. This forced the Valencia players to be innovative and Samu Castillejo almost scored a screamer. He found space in the center and let rip a ferocious shot from around 30 yards out, but only to see it go wide.
75’: Mendillibar’s side put the final dagger in the hearts of Valencia with a second goal fifteen minutes before full-time. Substitute Gonzalo Montiel played a smart one-two with Ocampos before being played into the box. Instead of shooting, he cut the ball back to Suso – who struck a perfect shot from outside the area into the bottom corner – doubling Sevilla’s lead and putting the game to bed.
83’: Valencia fans were even more angered by another penalty shout that got overturned sometime after the second goal. The hosts seemingly got a lifeline after striker Marcos de Sosa was tugged down in the area and the referee awarded them a penalty. However, VAR demanded that he look at the monitor – after which he canceled the penalty – much to the fury of the fans and players.
84’: Things went from bad to worse for the home side after that penalty overturn. Moriba lost his mind and lunged into an awful scissors tackle on Bryan Gil right in front of the referee’s face, which resulted in a direct red card and added further insult to injury.
Player of the Match – Loic Bade
Sevilla center-back Loice Bade managed to rile up the Valencia fans, yet proved to be a match winner too. He was defensively solid, being rapid with his reactions and making key challenges. He made six clearances and won 3/4 duels, playing a major role in Sevilla’s clean sheet. Bade scored a goal that any center-forward could be proud of and massively improved his chances of starting the key Europa League quarter-final second clash against United on Thursday.
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