Sevilla look to once again prove the Europa League is their domain, as they seek to raise the trophy a seventh time when they contest the final against AS Roma on Wednesday in Budapest.
The Spanish side has reached the final of the Europa League/UEFA Cup on six previous occasions, and they’ve won each of them. To win a seventh would give them nearly twice as many as any other club, and would solidify them as the most dominant club in the history of Europe’s second-flight competition.
But to do so, they must find a way to break down Jose Mourinho’s defensive setup. Roma are seeking to become the third different club that Mourinho has led to Europa League glory, and the Special One is a perfect 5-0 in European finals.
His Roma side reached the final on the back of a defensive display that saw them keep a clean sheet against Bayer Leverkusen despite facing 23 shots.
Given their domestic form of late, many believe Roma have been intentionally taking it easy in preparation for the final, as a win would give them Champions League football next season. Will the gamble pay off, or will Sevilla once again lift the trophy?
We break it all down in our Sevilla vs. Roma free betting picks below.
Sevilla vs AS Roma best odds
Sevilla vs AS Roma picks and predictions
When it comes to parking the bus, few do it better than Mourinho. Roma’s performance against Leverkusen was indicative of that, allowing just six of the 23 efforts to test the keeper. That followed a 1-0 first leg where they repelled 10 shots and held less than 40% possession.
That victory over the German side is the only one Roma has enjoyed in their past nine matches in all competitions, fueling accusations that they’ve been throwing down the stretch of the Serie A campaign once it became clear they would miss out on Champions League. Their team selections lend some weight to those allegations, as Mourinho has definitely fielded some interesting lineups over the past few weeks.
But he won’t do so on Wednesday. While they may not start, both Paulo Dybala and Leonardo Spinazzola are expected to be available for the final. Regardless, Mourinho is going to set up not to lose as he typically does in finals. In his five European finals, Mourinho’s sides have conceded just two goals — and both of those came in his very first one, a 3-2 extra-time victory with Porto.
Keeping a clean sheet on Wednesday might not be that difficult a task. Sevilla will be led by Youssef En-Nesyri, whose 18 goals across all competitions make him the only player this season to reach double digits.
And in the UCL group stage, they managed one goal or fewer in five matches on their way to dropping to Europa. While they scored in six of their eight knockout stage matches, only four times did they score multiple goals in regulation and one of those came by way of a pair of own goals.
Sevilla are at their best when they can be aggressive and force turnovers, allowing them to get the ball to their wide players and attack with pace. They’re not going to be able to do that easily against Roma. It’s going to take time to break down the defense, and it may require numbers pushing forward.
While that’s likely what ends up happening, I doubt we see it before halftime — which is why a halftime draw is our best bet for Wednesday’s final.
Nine of Roma’s 14 matches in the Europa League have been level at halftime, including each of the last five in knockout stages. In fact, there hasn’t even been a goal scored in the first half of those five fixtures.
Sevilla can match that for the most part, as their last five matches in all competitions have also been deadlocked after the first 45 minutes, with only two of those matches featuring first-half tallies. I expect those trends to continue on Wednesday.
My best bet: First-half Under 0.5 (+134 at FanDuel)
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Sevilla vs AS Roma side analysis
Neither side comes into this final in particularly great form, a big reason the 3-way line is nearly even for all outcomes in regulation. In fact, the “To lift the trophy” market is as evenly split as I’ve ever seen for a final, with both teams favored slightly at different books.
Sevilla are winless in their last three matches, as they’re likely to finish in the bottom half of the La Liga table. They’ve also had a player sent off in each of their last two and three of their last four. Only one of those — the sending off of Marcos Acuna against Juventus — will impact their lineup on Wednesday, but it shows their lack of discipline of late.
Roma have just one victory in their last nine, but they’ve won four of their last seven in the competition with just one defeat. While they would secure a Europa League spot again next season with a win this weekend in Serie A, they are aiming for the Champions League and have put all their eggs into Wednesday’s basket.
Dybala likely will come off the bench, but the return of Spinazzola would be a big boost to the lineup.
Mourinho is a master at winning one-off showdowns, but Sevilla’s cup magic is tough to go against. That said, I think this one goes well past regulation. I anticipate a draw with Roma finding a way to win in extra time, with a well-rested squad against a Sevilla side that has been punching above its weight throughout the competition.
Sevilla vs AS Roma Over/Under analysis
If you’re hoping to play the Under in this one, you’re going to have to drop down to the 1.5-goal total. Unless you plan to lay a ton of juice, you'll have to steer clear of the typical 2.5, with the Under currently priced past -200 across the board. The Under 1.5 does offer decent value at +150, but I’d recommend staying on the first-half under with our best bet.
While they’ve not been winning lately, Sevilla have been involved in some goal-laden affairs. Just eight of their matches in all competitions have featured less than two goals, and three goals or more have been scored in eight of their last 14 matches.
Meanwhile, Roma’s last two matches have been relative shootouts compared to when they’re at full strength. Their last two have featured four and three goals, respectively, with the previous three matches seeing just one goal scored. In fact, a staggering 18 matches this season have ended with Roma and their opponents scoring no more than once.
Four of Roma’s last five matches in the Europa League have ended 1-0 or 0-0, and I think Sevilla are going to struggle to break them down and get frustrated in the process. There’s a real potential for a 2-0 or 2-1 scoreline should they start throwing the kitchen sink at Roma and opening themselves up to a counter, which is why I’m personally staying away from the match total and looking to find some value live.
Sevilla vs AS Roma game info
|Location:||Puskas Arena, Budapest, Hungary|
|Date:||Wednesday, May 31, 2023|
|Time:||3:00 p.m. ET|
Sevilla vs AS Roma key injuries
Sevilla: Marcos Acuna D (Out), Marcao D (Out).
AS Roma: Rick Karsdorp D (Out), Marash Kumbulla D (Out), Paolo Dybala F (Probable).
Sevilla vs AS Roma weather
It will be a beautiful evening in Budapest on Wednesday. Temperatures will drop into the high-60s after kickoff, with not a drop of rain in the forecast. Light breezes should make it pleasant for all, but won’t impact play.