Europa League Villarreal vs. Sevilla: Primera Division High Flyers Free Soccer Pick

Nikki Adams

Wednesday, March 11, 2015 6:11 PM GMT

Wednesday, Mar. 11, 2015 6:11 PM GMT

The All-Spanish clash between Villarreal & Sevilla in Europa League's last 16 practically leaps off the page as a must-see clash. Join us as we preview this matchup and serve up our soccer picks.

Villarreal's Strong Home Form
Villarreal are riding high in Primera Division, in sixth place with a 14-6-6 record and 48 points they are only a point adrift of Sevilla. A large part of their success in Spain's top flight is down to solid home form, which stands confidently on a 10-0-3 mark. In all competitions, they've won 12 of their last 14 home matches, and their only hiccups during this run of convincing form were a 2-2 draw to Borussia M'gladback in Europa League group play and a 3-1 loss to Barcelona two weeks ago in Copa Del Rey.

They routed Celta de Vigo 4-1 at the weekend, bouncing back from successive setbacks to Spanish giants – 1-1 draw to Real Madrid at the Bernabeu and a 3-1 loss to Barcelona. The big win at home over top half of the table Celta de Vigo will give the Yellow Submarines a much needed confidence boost after Barcelona dumped them from Copa Del Rey (6-2 on aggregate) surely.

It's worth noting that their solid home form was also prevalent through the Europa League rounds. Villarreal completed group play with a 3-2-1 record, of which a large part was an undefeated record at home (2-1-0). In the R32, they were very convincing against a tough Red Bull Salzburg, winning both home and away games and clinching the tie 5-2 on aggregate.

So in recognition of this home form, Villarreal enter this R16 clash as the favourites, but only notionally so at +110 soccer odds. Clearly, odds makers don't want to overstate home advantage at the expense of the defending champions Sevilla.

 

Sevilla On Course To Defend Title
Defending Europa League champions Sevilla are eyeing a second straight European title and they are a lively +1000 soccer pick in futures betting to accomplish the feat. Underscoring their market valuation is a rich vein of form in this competition. Although they finished second in group G with a 3-2-1, they went a perfect 3-0-0 at home. In the R32, they beat a very strong Borussia M'gladbach home and away and won the tie convincingly 4-2 on aggregate.

In domestic action, Los Rojiblancos are flying high in fifth place with a 15-4-7 record and 49 points. Not unlike Villarreal, the bulk of their success is down to solid home form, where they are undefeated through 13 fixtures (9-4-0). On the road, however, it's been a bit of a hit and miss with Sevilla. They've faced a few challenges and boast only a 6-0-7 record in La Liga.

Largely down to their less than convincing road form and Villarreal's very convincing home form, Los Rojiblancos emerge as the +280 underdogs on the soccer odds board to win the first leg. Heck, even the draw is trading at a high +250 soccer odds. Obviously, odds makers have to take into account home and away circumstances, respectively, in the first leg. As far as the tie itself is concerned, it's decidedly cornered in Sevilla's camp with -125 future odds to advance into the quarterfinals.  That is telling.

 

Soccer Betting Verdict
To get a sense of just how close this matchup really is, one needs to look at the futures odds to advance into the quarters where  Sevilla are matched at -125 and Villarreal closely follow on +100 soccer odds. In more ways than one, this tie is a bit of a tossup. So how do soccer bettors approach this game?

To begin with, it would be remiss to look beyond the hosts. Villarreal have the home advantage in the first leg and at +110 soccer odds, with the kind of home form they boast, they are a tempting soccer pick.

On the flip side, Sevilla have a knack of rising to the occasion. They were solid in the first knockout rounds. They could be just as solid in this next knockout round, and odds makers may be underrating them too dramatically on the soccer odds board. Actually, Sevilla are undefeated in four of their last five meeting with Villarreal (two wins and two draws). If that doesn't warrant a look at their soccer odds to either win (+280) or draw (+250) what does?

Fact is, it's impossible to determine which quality will rule the day: Villarreal's incredible home form or Sevilla's ability to rise to the occasion when it matters most. When it comes down to it, there is value on both sides of the coin for your soccer picks. For our money, we feel they could cancel each other out in the first leg, which would make the draw at +250 the best soccer pick. What's more, these two sides have a penchant to score, prompting the safest soccer pick we think, which is the Over 2.5 that can be backed at -105 at Bet365.

Free Soccer Picks: Draw +250; Over 2.5 -105

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