Our prediction for this Champions League match:
Sevilla will be looking to build on a hard-fought 1-0 win over Rennes when they welcome Krasnodar at their Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on Wednesday evening. Los Sevillanos totally outplayed the Ligue 1 outfit in round 2, with the team creating a number of clear-cut chances to score. The La Liga side aim to overtake Chelsea in top position in the standings, and they are likely to go all guns blazing at Krasnodar.
Since Julen Lopetegui can count on key players for Wednesday’s clash, it is no surprise bookies see Sevilla as hot favourites. The Russians, on the other hand, experienced all sorts of problems at the back in a 4-0 loss to Chelsea, and they are unlikely to spoil Sevilla’s party at Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan. The lack of experience in the Champions League seems to be Krasnodar’s biggest problem, and, taking everything into account, anything but a routine home win would be a major surprise.
Highlighted Player (Luuk de Jong):
The 26-year-old Dutch striker Luuk de Jong is considered one of Europe’s deadliest strikers with his incredible return of goals in games he spends playing. Luuk de Jong began his football career at De Graafschap in 2008, but moved on to Twente only a year later.
The tally of 39 goals in 76 league appearances earned him a transfer to Borussia Monchengladbach, but his spell in Germany ended in disappointment. Bundesliga club attempted to revive his career by sending him out on loan to Newcastle United but his stint with the English club yielded even more disappointment and concluded in utter disaster with De Jong playing 12 games without scoring a single goal for the Magpies.
A return to Netherlands and PSV Eindhoven turned out to be a proper hit for the 26-year-old striker who has restored his scoring touch with more than 50 goals for the Boeren after less than 90 games.
Highlighted Team (Krasnodar):
Krasnodar are one of several Russian clubs that were founded in the 21st century (2008). The Byki were promoted to the Russian Premier League in 2011 and they were playing under Serbian tactician Slavoljub Muslin back then. Krasnodar finished the 2014/2015 season in third place in the standings and that is regarded as the club’s biggest success.
The club’s biggest rivals are Kuban Krasnodar and there have always been fireworks when the two teams take on each other in the local derby. The Bulls participated in the 2015/2016 Europa League group stages and it has to be noted that they managed to beat star-studded Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund in front of home fans.
However, they failed to make life difficult for Sparta Prague in the last 32, losing 4-0 to the Czech outfit on aggregate. Krasnodar play their home matches at Krasnodar Stadium, the venue that was built in 2016. The capacity of the stadium is 33,000.