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Jon Riley 18th May 2010 - 15:23

Cup form a Rey of light for Atletico

The Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona opens its huge gates to the fans of both Sevilla FC and Atletico Madrid as it hosts the final of the Copa Del Rey.

The final of the "King's Cup" returns to the Catalan cathedral for the first time since 1970.

Sevilla head to Barcelona after clinching that fourth position and final Champions League place. Los Rojiblancos have suffered a somewhat disappointing league campaign, only finally securing that elusive fourth place on the last game of the season with an unconvincing 3-2 victory over Almeria, courtesy of a last gasp goal from Rodri.

Los Nervionenses were expected by their fans, and some pundits, to challenge the big two of Real and Barca for the title this season but sadly were some distance off.

Their coach Manolo Jimenez paid the price for their below-par form and brand of football that their fans perceived to be overly negative. He was replaced by Antonio Alvarez who has managed to guide the team to the Champions League by picking up sufficient points.

The Copa Del Rey has given Sevilla their only chance of silverware this season. They have ousted defending Champions Barcelona en route but have also secured impressive victories against Deportivo and Getafe.

Injury problems once again hamper Sevilla's preparations they have for most of the season. Luis Fabiano has been ruled out due to a muscular problem, a blow which has been made even worse for Antonio Alvarez due to Alvaro Negredo's suspension. Rodri may be given the nod in attack after his weekend heroics.

Defensive stalwarts Federico Fazio, Fernando Navarro and Ivica Dragutinovic are all absent once again.

Atletico's disastrous league form has focused their attentions on to their cup adventures. Los Colchoneros' have already got the Europa League trophy locked away in the trophy cabinet of the Vicente Calderon and are looking to add a tenth Copa Del Rey to join it.

Against Fulham Diego Forlan was the difference between the sides and manager Quique Sanchez Flores will have his fingers crossed that the Uruguayan hitman can reproduce a similarly clinical performance.

Atleti's route to the final has been a little smoother than that of Sevilla with victories over Celta Vigo and Racing. They did have to overturn a 3-0 first leg deficit to Recreativo Huelva in January though. A remarkable 5-1 home triumph saw Atletico progress.

The men from Madrid were able to rest almost all of their star players for the 3-0 weekend defeat against Getafe. Situated lamentably in mid table the league has played second fiddle to the cups for some time now.

The probable starting eleven should be the same as the one that started in Hamburg against Fulham.

When looking at this game from a betting perspective you would think that Sevilla would be favourites given that they finished higher in La Liga than Atletico and that the Andalucians defeated Los Colchoneros' on May 2nd. They are 13/8 to win a fifth Copa Del Rey.

However, I am inclined to side with Atletico making it a cup double. They can also be backed at 13/8.

Sevilla's injury problems and Negredo's suspension leaves them a little light up front. I feel that fullstrength Atletico will have gained a massive confidence boost in their Europa League victory and will repeat the feat.

My recommendation is for Diego Forlan to score at anytime at 5/4 and both teams to score 8/11.

An outside bet at 3/1 would be an Atletico Win and Over 2.5 goals in the Match X Goals market.




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