England or Spain? Liverpool or Sevilla? Who will win the Europa League Final 2016 at the close of the game on Wednesday night? It is the first European final of the season and it pits LIverpool against the Europa Kings, Sevilla. The Spaniards have won the competition for the last two seasons running and are the record holders in the UEFA Cup/Europa League with four titles to their name. But Liverpool aren’t that far behind with three successes in the tournament. But the current form is with the Spaniard whose four titles have come in the last decade alone.
Will Sevilla win the Europa League Final 2016?
There is a decent case here for them. They dropped from the UEFA Champions League this season back to the UEFA Europa League but that hasn’t taken them out of their stride at all. They seem to have a big pedigree in cup competitions because as well as having triumphed in the Europa League four times since 2006 they have won the Copa del Rey twice since then as well and are back in the final of that competition as well, where they will face Barcelona on the weekend.
Current Form Sevilla (most recent first in all competitions): LLWLDW
Despite their UEFA Champions League campaign this season not going well, finishing third behind Manchester City and Juventus (losing four games on the bounce as well), the silver lining is that they made it back to the place they love. They have played eight games in this season’s competition therefore and have averaged 1.8 goals per game in that spell, posting a W4 D2 L2 record in that sequence of games. The big goalscoring threat that they carry is through Kevin Gameiro who has netted in each of their last three Europa league games. In total he has netted seven goals in eight Europa League games this season. Gameiro is a quote of 15/8 in the anytime goalscorer market.
Sevilla’s head to head record against English opposition: W3 D2 L3
Despite his impressive return of goals, the Frenchman hasn’t managed to book himself an international call up for Euro 2016 but he has been linked with a summer move to Barcelona. They are big game specialists because their domestic season has been poor and they have won just four of their last fourteen games across all competitions and three of those wins were in the Europa League. That shows where their focus is, but they also took notable wins over Barcelona, Real Madrid and Villarreal in La Liga this season and did beat Juventus in the UEFA Champions League.
Will Liverpool win the Europa League Final 2016?
The Reds are looking to pull level on UEFA Cup titles with Sevilla, which they will do with a victory on Wednesday night in Basel. Liverpool’s progress through the group stage was just about as dull a it could get, topping their group with only ten points from their six matches played. They drew five of their first seven games in the competition this season and managed just the six goals in total in those seven games. So it wasn’t an explosive entry in the UEFA Europa League this season from Liverpool and in fact, Adam Lallana is their top scorer in this season’s tournament with a three goal haul. Daniel Sturridge is 3/2 to score in Wednesday’s Final and the England man has two goals in seven appearances in this season’s Europa League.
Current Liverpool form (most recent first, all competitions): DDWWLL
After getting past Augsburg 1-0 on aggregate in the round of 32, the Reds were handed a cracker of a tie against Manchester United in the round of 16. That’s really when the Merseyside crew started to come to life, completing dominating the Red Devils in the first leg and winning out 3-1 on aggregate. But there was an ever bigger test for Liverpool to come as Jurgen Klopp got a rematch against his former employees Borussia Dortmund, who were outright favourites to win this season’s Europa League at the time. After a 1-1 draw at the Westfalenstadion, Liverpool netted three goals in the final thirty minutes of the return leg to card a dramatic 4-3 comeback win on the night and to move through to the semis 5-4 on aggregate.
Liverpool’s head to head record v Spanish opponents: W14 D10 L10
Liverpool’s only loss so far in the Europa League happened in the semi final first leg when they were shot down in injury time on the road at Villarreal in a 1-0 loss. But the Reds were comfortable winners in a 3-0 aggregate triumph back at Anfield, helped by their opponents going down to ten men. You can tell that Liverpool have placed a higher importance on this than their league positioning in the Premier League, as they have rested players on the domestic front, so they are geared up for this. They can take some incentive from the fact that Sevilla have picked up only one clean sheet in their last thirteen games played, so the Reds could get some good chances to secure this win and their last UEFA Cup success was against Spanish opposition (2001, Deportivo Alaves).
Europa League Final 2016 Prediction
This is such an open game because both have their respective strengths and weaknesses. Sevilla are a powerful home side, but not so much out on the road and they didn’t win a single league game on the road in La Liga this term. Liverpool stuttered their way through much of the Europa League until the latter stages and were a long way short of title winning quality in the Premier League.
So a toss of a coin in this one, and the deal maker could be Kevin Gameiro. The Frenchman is in top form and while Liverpool’s goal output has improved towards the end of the campaign, their main man Daniel Sturridge just has the two goals to his name. This is a match which Gameiro can strengthen his case to move to a big club. Regardless of their domestic form, Sevilla seem to turn it on when they need to in the big matches and in the Europa League. This should be tight, but the experience of Sevilla in this situation may just given them the edge.
Europe League Final 2016 Odds
Liverpool 7/5, Sevilla 2/1, Draw 23/10
Europa League Final 2016 Stats
Both sides have won all of their previous appearances in the UEFA Cup/Europa League final.
Sevilla’s first Europa League title came against Middlesbrough in the 2006 Final
Liverpool’s last UEFA Cup success was against Spanish opposition in 2001
Liverpool have failed to win both previous visits to St Jakob Park (D1 L1)
Sevilla drew at the ground against FC Basel in the round of sixteen this season
Spanish clubs have won four of the last five Europa League Finals
The last Spain v England Europa League final saw Atletico Madrid beat Fulham 2-1 in 2010
Europa League Final Promotion
Online betting site Stan James have a money back special running for her first and last goalscorer markets for your Europa League Final 2016 market. Place a pre-match wager on the first goalscorer or goalscorer market and if the bet loses but Kevin Gameiro or Daniel Sturridge nets the first goal of the game then you will get your lost stake refunded as a free bet up to the value of £25. Register an account with Stan James and earn a free £20 bet as a welcome bonus from them.