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Fireworks expected as Real Madrid host Sevilla in La Liga

Real Madrid

Bengaluru, January 18: Saturday's Real Madrid versus Sevilla La Liga clash at the Santiago Bernabeu features a host of dramatic storylines and a fascinating cast of characters.

The match kicks off at 4pm local time (8.30pm IST) and will be shown live on Facebook Watch.

One of La Liga's most historic fixtures will again not lack for narratives, including Sevilla coach Julen Lopetegui returning to the capital and Real Madrid skipper Sergio Ramos facing his former team once more, if his ankle allows it.

Fixtures | Results | Points Table

There is extra spice with both sides involved in this season's unpredictable and exciting title race. Real Madrid sit joint-top with Barcelona at the mid-way point of the campaign, with Sevilla just five points behind in fourth place.

Los Blancos' home form this season has been excellent, with six wins and three draws in the league in front of their own fans so far.

All is perfectly poised at the Bernabeu, with plenty to prove for players on both sides as they go head to head for three points likely to be huge in this season's La Liga title.

With MSL Media inputs, myKhel.com looks at some of the sub plots of the game.

Zidane's formidable defence

Zidane's formidable defence

Zinedine Zidane's formidable defence has conceded just six goals in those nine matches.

That is a defensive record which has helped make Belgian international keeper Thibaut Courtois the leading contender to take the ‘Zamora' award for La Liga's best goalkeeper this season.

Special for Ramos

Special for Ramos

This fixture is also always extra special for Real Madrid skipper Ramos, who was born in Seville and started his career at the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan.

The 32-year-old usually has an eventful time against his former club, with four goals scored and 12 yellow cards in 16 La Liga meetings to date. It is also true that he suffered a severe pain in his ankle during the last Real game, so it isnot sure if he will be able to play.

Sevilla's away form

Sevilla's away form

Away form has not been a strength of Sevilla's in recent years, but that has changed under Lopetegui this term. The rojiblancos have the best ‘road-record' in La Liga so far, with 20 points in total from their first 10 away games.

Summer signings Diego Carlos and Fernando have been excellent in defensive roles, while evergreen Argentine playmaker Ever Banega gets better and better.

Reunion

Reunion

Lopetegui is likely to be extra motivated on Saturday, having had a short spell as Real Madrid coach last season. Sevilla's on loan left-back Sergio Reguilon should also be up for it and will be free to face his ‘parent' club.

Mexico international Javier ‘Chicharito' Hernandez also has a Bernabeu past and will be hoping Lopetegui gives him a chance to feature, although it seems to be some movements around the Mexican striker ahead the current winter transfer market.

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Story first published: Saturday, January 18, 2020, 10:30 [IST]
Other articles published on Jan 18, 2020