Sevilla were looking to get off the mark at home in the league after getting their first Champions League home win on Wednesday, but their first LaLiga win in Nervión will have to wait.
Although Sevilla's start was encouraging, the lack of chances weighed the team down too much. The first shot on goal came in the 51st minute and ten minutes later Álvaro García, on the counter-attack, scored the only goal of the game to make it 1-0.
Sampaoli's team suffered greatly from the goal. So much so, that they failed to trouble Dmitrievski enough to even deserve the equaliser. Next up for the team it is time to close out the Champions League group stage in Manchester in a match with nothing at stake before playing El Gran Derbi next Sunday in Heliópolis.
Sevilla came out with intensity and with the most attacking formation since Sampaoli came back to the team. In the first few attacks, the defensive line barely held their position, while the rest of the team was embedded in the opponent's half to try to find space. However, right from the start, it was Isi Palazón who tried his luck, with a shot from outside the area that Dmitrovic saved after recovering his position.
Sevilla were still in possession and even in control of the game, but when it came down to it, they were unable to find the net guarded by Dmitrievski. Far from it, as a counter-attack led by Camello forced Dmitrovic to come out, who, blocked the chance just in time before the Rayo attacker could get in front of the goal. Sevilla were pushing and pushing, with both wings seeing a lot of action - especially Telles - and Januzaj tentatively making forward passes in his first start as a Sevilla player.
Rayo moved the ball from back to front quicker than Sevilla
A mistake in midfield set up Camello again just after the midway point of the first half, but again Dmitrovic, this time with his foot, managed to turn another clear Rayo move behind for a corner. Rayofound it easierto get shots away than Sevilla, who failed to do so throughout the first half.
As the minutes ticked by, the home side's clear possession advantage became less and less and that led to Sevilla becoming untidy and even signs of desperation at times. Rayo remained patient, trying to play a more orderly game than their opponents and hoping to get a goal.
Álvaro's goal came as a shock to the team, and they could not find an equaliser
Despite the introduction of Papu Gómez and Rafa Mir, Sevilla did not start well after the break. Unai López had two big chances for the visitors within just five minutes of the restart.
The team improved after those chances, with Papu and Isco combining to set up Rafa Mir, who saw an effort saved before firing the rebound into the side-netting. A few minutes later, Isco laid the ball off for Lamela, who drew Dmitrievski into a good save.
Once again, we conceded when we were at our best in the match. Rayo came forward on the counter attack and Álvaro García rolled the ball home. A real blow for the team, who looked an equaliser but struggled to create any clear-cut chances. In fact, it was the visitors who came closest to scoring, through Comesaña.
Sevilla had a few half-chances, such as a Jordán free kick or a shot that Suso drilled straight at the keeper, but, all in all, Dmitrievski was never troubled.
There was a flurry of bookings after the goal, including one for Isco, which rules him out of El Gran Derbi. The seven additional minutes weren't enough, and Sevilla are now only outside of the relegation zone on goal difference.