Sevilla brace for mighty Man U

February 21, 2018
Manchester United's Paul Pogba, foreground centre, attends a training session ahead of today's Champions League, round of 16 first-leg match against Sevilla.


MADRID, Spain (AP):

It seems simple to Sevilla coach Vincenzo Montella: His forwards better get their act together or his team won't have a chance against Manchester United in the last 16 of the Champions League.

Sevilla have three wins in a row entering today's first leg, but Montella is not happy with the many chances wasted on attack.

And they can't afford to be inefficient against the English Premier League's best defence.

"We need to be capable of finishing off the chances we create," Montella said after Sevilla beat Las Palmas 2-1 in the Spanish league on Saturday. "We had six, seven, eight opportunities to score and we didn't. I'm not happy with that."

Sevilla have five goals in their last three matches, and have scored at least once in their last nine games, but Montella thinks that isn't enough considering how well the team has been playing.

"We must be able to capitalise on our chances because games can change in a second," Montella said. "I liked the team's spirit, but we need to improve technically and we need to score more."

Jose Mourinho's United have conceded 19 goals in 27 Premier League matches, better even than runaway leaders Manchester City.

Sevilla have a respectable attack which last month was boosted by the signing of former Barcelona forward Sandro Ramirez. Montella has options in attack, including Luis Muriel, Nolito, and Wissam Ben Yedder. His attacking midfielders include Pablo Sarabia, Jesus Navas and Joaquin Correa.

Montella, whose only experience as a coach in the Champions League was with Roma in 2011, says he regards Mourinho as a reference for coaches.

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