Real Madrid vs. Sevilla: Preview and Betting Pick

Real Madrid vs. Sevilla: Preview and Betting Pick

Real Madrid, the top team in the Spanish Primera Division, will try to extend their one point lead over rivals Barcelona, when they face the current fifth place team in La Liga, Sevilla, on Wednesday.

Real Madrid (16-0-3) vs. Sevilla (12-3-4) La Liga, Wednesday, February 4, 2:45 PM. ET.

Real Madrid has won two of the last three meetings between the two teams in league play, but Sevilla won the last meeting 2-1. Both teams will be playing for the second time this season, but the first time in league play. Their first meeting was in the UEFA Supercup, a match that Real Madrid won 2-0. In that game, Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo scored both goals for his team, but the Ballon d'Or winner will miss this game, which will be the second of his two game suspension, that came as a result of getting thrown out of the game against Cordoba, for kicking an opponent during the game.

Real Madrid shouldn't miss their star too much, because Gareth Bale is expected to replace Ronaldo, and he has been known to play very well when the team doesn't have Ronaldo in the lineup, scoring 11 goals in the 11 games that Ronaldo has missed since he joined the club.

Real Madrid has won 7 games and lost 1 game at home this season, and have outscored their opponents 27-5. They have won 15 of their last 16 games, with their only loss coming at the hands of Valencia, on the road, which means Sevilla will be in for a tough match.

Sevilla finished fifth in the standings last year, which is where they find themselves again this season, but this time around, they have a chance of realistically finishing in the top three, and earn a Champions League spot, because they are only five points behind 3rd place Atletico Madrid, and nine points behind league leading Real Madrid, which makes this a big game for them, especially since Madrid will be without Ronaldo, which gives them a better chance to win the game.

Sevilla had gone six straight matches without a loss, winning five of them and playing to a draw against Eibar, before falling on the road to Valencia 3-1 in their last game. Carlos Bacca has led the way for Sevilla this season, scoring 12 goals in 19 games, including one goal in each of his last two league games. The team will need him at his best in this game, because they are just 5-4 on the road this year, and have a negative goal differential on the road.

Sevilla will also need to play better than they did defensively against their rivals Valencia, because they are going up against the top scoring team in the Spanish Primera, and can't afford to have many defensive lapses, because Real Madrid will make them pay if they do.

My Pick: Even though Real Madrid will be without Cristiano Ronaldo, who is their leading scorer, they have a very talented team that will be just as good without him in the game, so expect Real Madrid to win this game.