FRIDAY night sees Sevilla face Inter Milan in the Europa League final and we asked Chris Goodwin (@CGeorgeGamble) to pick out the best bookings-based plays ahead of their showpiece showdown.
Sevilla vs Inter Milan | Friday 21st August 2020, 20:00 | BT Sport
The Europa League qualifiers are currently underway, despite the fact that we are yet to find out who the winner is from the previous year. All will become clear on Friday night as Julen Lopetegui and his Sevilla men go head-to-head in a winner takes all contest against Antonio Conte’s Inter Milan in Koln.
It’s arguable that Sevilla have had a tougher journey to the final than their Italian counterparts, having to overcome Roma, Wolves and Manchester United respectively. They rode their luck in the last round against Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men until they snatched victory in the final 10 minutes of the game.
Inter Milan’s presence in the competition is largely due to their poor results in the Champions League group stages, finishing third in their group. But credit where credit is due, they didn’t show any signs of despondency and their performances have suggested that they saw this as a competition they could win right from the get-go.
- Commit on average 12 fouls per game in the Europa League this season.
- Receive on average 14 fouls per game in the Europa League this season.
- In the knockout phase, they have received 2+ cards in 4/5 games.
- In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 4/5 occasions.
- Commit on average 14.8 fouls per game in the Europa League this season.
- Receive on average 9.2 fouls per game in the Europa League this season.
- In the knockout phase, they have received 2+ cards in 1/5 games.
- In those games the opposition has seen 2+ cards on 2/5 occasions.
- Referee Danny Makkelie has overseen just one other fixture in the Europa League this season (Bayer Leverkusen Vs. Rangers). In that fixture he showed 5 yellow cards.
- Sevilla are undefeated in 15 of their last 16 UEL matches.
- Inter have won 8 of their last 10 UEL matches.
- Sevilla have won this competition more times than any other side (5).
- 4/5 previous finals have seen 3+ goals.
- 4/5 previous finals have seen both teams receive 2+ cards each.
- Sevilla have lifted the trophy in each of their FIVE appearances in UEFA finals – only Liverpool and Real Madrid have won more.
Both sides have been truly phenomenal in this season's Europa League. Both of them have overcome their respective tests with flying colours on their route to the final at the RheinEnergieStadion.
Due to the attacking prowess of both sides my first pick is for there to be 3+ goals. Firstly, I’m a bit surprised by the price. I understand it’s a final and you’d think that it would be a cagey affair given the occasion.
But when you look through history at say the last five finals in this competition, the Over 2.5 has landed 80% of the time, yet the implied probability, going by the odds from Betfair, would suggest this has just a 49% chance of landing.
My second bet for this fixture is for both teams to see 2+ cards at a price of 8/11 (William Hill). Similarly to above, the implied probability of this landing is a long way off the percentage of how often this has landed in previous finals.
At 8/11 the implied probability is just 58%, however this has also landed in four of the last five finals – this bet has also landed in both finals that Sevilla took part in within those five.
With that in mind, it’s important to look at the referee. Danny Makkelie has officiated just once in this competition this season, a second-leg victory for Bayer Leverkusen over Rangers, and showed a total of five cards – three for Leverkusen and two for Rangers.
My last bet is somewhat of a longshot but I think the price is far too high. Given the pedigree that Los Palanganas have in this tournament, it’d be foolish to believe this is going to be a walkover for Inter. Sevilla have dumped Roma, Wolves and United out of the competition in their quest to reach the final and will be confident they can win this for the sixth time.
Both teams can rack up the corners and given the way both teams like to set up and attack their opponents with pace, I’d be very surprised if one side didn’t hit the three corners in this one.
The final part is for both teams to see 20+ Booking pPints which I have covered. I’d personally have this at around 9/1 so the 16/1 looks excellent value.
Sevilla vs Inter Milan – Over 2.5 Goals (21/20 Betfair)
Sevilla vs Inter Milan – Each Team 20+ Booking Points (8/11 William Hill)
Sevilla vs Inter Milan – Sevilla to win, Each Team 3+ Corners and Each Team 20+ Booking Points (16/1 Betfair)