El Centrocampista

ONE MONTH ON – Míchel gets Sevilla back on track


After four games and one month in charge of Sevilla, new coach Míchel has got the club back to winning ways.

In that time his side have taken seven points from a possible nine. However, his tenure got off to the worst possible start with a 2-0 defeat away to Real Sociedad. Since that result Sevilla have undergone resurgence under Míchel. They’ve beaten Osasuna, drawn with Athlético Madrid and produced a stunning comeback against Valencia at the Mestalla, winning 2-1 to record their first away win in the league since November in the process.

The former Getafe boss is only on a short term contract until the end of the season, however, if he can guide Los Rojiblancos to fourth and earn a coveted Champions League spot in the process he will be given a more permanent deal at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán.

Míchel was not the first choice for Sevilla President Del Nido who, before hiring Míchel, was rumoured to have tried to bring Quique Sánchez Flores to Andalusia. Despite these less than ideal circumstances, Míchel has done an admirable job at Sevilla so far.

With Barcelona and Real Madrid securing the top two places in La Liga and Valencia looking likely to seal third, it has left only one remaining Champions League place up for grabs. Four points separate Athletic Club in fourth from seven other clubs, Sevilla being one of them. When put like that, Sevilla’s ultimatum to Míchel that he must finish in the top four seems slightly less harsh.

The immediate future may also be bright for the ex-Real Madrid midfielder as the upcoming fixtures look kind for his side. Of the twelve remaining games in La Liga, eight are against teams that are currently below Sevilla in the league, three of them being against the bottom three clubs. If Míchel wants to continue as Sevilla boss beyond the end of the season, he will have to mastermind as many wins as possible for the club.

What is true is that Sevilla’s chances of finishing in the top four looked a lot less likely a month ago when Macelino García Toral was in charge, and although Sevilla have only climbed one place in the league since Toral’s departure, there is renewed belief among the players that a top four finish is possible.

In his short time at the club, the new coach has managed to galvanise a team that looked destined for mid table obscurity to a team capable of putting a string of wins together. He has got the players believing in themselves again and their response to him has reinvigorated the Sevilla faithful.

A big test will come in two weeks time when reigning champions Barcelona visit the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán in two weeks time, but the hosts will be looking to go one better than the draw between the two sides at the Camp Nou in October.

Barça’s poor away form this season will give hope to Míchel’s men who will want nothing more than to cause an upset.

Before that mouth watering clash however, Sevilla must travel to Sporting Gijón who despite being in the relegation zone put in a sterling performance against Barcelona last weekend and were unlucky to lose the game 2-1.

Míchel will be hoping that his side’s good run of form continues to the end of the season or else he may well find himself out of a job.

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