Sevilla – Atlético Madrid: Late Ocampos Winner Keeps Sevilla’s Title Hopes Alive (2-1)
It was a karmic finish for Atlético Madrid, as they were the side to experience a loss at the hands of a late set piece goal, when Lucas Ocampos’ eighty-eighth minute volley from a corner kick made it 2-1 for Sevilla. Though Atlético Madrid controlled the majority of the match, they just couldn’t find the goals to outscore their opponents.
Tactical analysis and match report by Charlie Tuley.
Though Sevilla came into Matchday 18 second-placed in LaLiga, they’ve been going through a tough spell recently. They have dropped into the Europa League from a Champions League group that they probably should have qualified from, and their most recent match saw them beat fifth-division side Andratx via a shootout in the Copa del Rey. Sevilla have struggled mightily with injuries lately, and they were missing Youssef En-Nesyri, Erik Lamela, Jesús Navas, Óliver Torres, and Suso for the match against Atlético Madrid. Fernando was also suspended for the fixture.
With all of the injuries, Julen Lopetegui was forced to field an altered lineup against Atlético Madrid. Bono started in net, whilst Gabriel Montiel, Jules Koundé, Diego Carlos, and Karim Rekik made up the back four. The midfield three was Joan Jordán, Thomas Delaney, and Ivan Rakitić, and the wingers were Lucas Ocampos and Papu Gómez. Starting as the striker was twenty year-old Iván Romero, who had only played one (!) minute in LaLiga so far this season.
Like Sevilla, Atlético Madrid were also in a poor run of form coming into the match. They had lost their previous two matches in LaLiga, and had dropped out of the top four after . . .