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Pre-match reports


Another vital match in Nervión for the fight for Champions League qualification against one of the surprises of the season in Deportivo Alavés

There is no time to rue last Sunday's defeat. La Liga is relentless in its final stage and it's time to get back to work to come up against a surprise contender for fourth spot. Deportivo Alavés started the season well and, contrary to what many though, have maintained that form to mount a European fight. To achieve their goal, they will have to come out on top from a Sánchez-Pizjuán which is not used to two consecutive defeats. The game will also be special for Joaquín Caparrós who said goodbye to the Sevilla fans against Alavés in what he thought would be his last match managing the Nervionenses.

The coach hopes that Mercado, Escudero, Sarabia and André Silva will be back in time, while Vaclík seems he needs more time. Banega will miss out due to suspension. Juan Soriano will return in goal and Caparrós will have to decide between Javi Díaz, who started against Valencia, or the Colombian Lucho as substitute. 

The previous match ended in a draw thanks to a late goal from Ben Yedder

Alavés need to recover from the blow they suffered last Saturday against Atlético Madrid when they were beaten 4-0 at home. The side from Vitoria have a difficult fixture list but their European dream remains alive, despite their objective at the start of the season simply being staying up. Their hopes rest on getting a win in a stadium where they have not won in more than 60 years. Abelardo Fernández may make changes to his team as they have another fixture on Sunday against Leganés in Mendizorroza.

Their manager will be missing two key players in Guillermo Maripán and their captain, Manu García. The Basque team have not qualified for Europe in 16 years, not since the 2002/03 season after the famous final in 2001 in Dortmund against Liverpool which saw the English team take the trophy home after Delfí Geli's own goal in extra time.

The Basque side hope to return to Europe for the first team since the 02/03 season

Juan Martínez Munuera will be in charge of refereeing the match. Sevilla do not have a favourable record under him, recording seven wins, three draws, and nine defeats in 19 games. The Basque side have two wins, one draw and one defeat. Jesús Gil Manzano will be in charge of the VAR

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