Wolfsburg (AP) – You have won the Europa League six times. And reached the Champions League five times in seven years. Seville FC almost gets the best out of its role of always standing in the shadow of the Spanish giants from Madrid and Barcelona.
On Wednesday, Bundesliga club VfL Wolfsburg will receive exactly this attractive opponent in the Champions League (9 p.m. / DAZN). For the first time since the 2-0 quarter-final win against Real Madrid in April 2016, the Volkswagen Arena will not be full for a VfL European Cup match due to corona, but it will be sold out again with 13,277 spectators.
Sevilla FC as a great role model
The Wolfsburg can still learn a lot from the vast experience of the Spaniards. If there is hardly a heavyweight like FC Bayern Munich in the domestic league, then it should be as much as possible of what is otherwise possible: regular participation in the Champions League, for example. Or getting ahead in this competition. “It would be nice to come back as far as 2016. It is now time to lay the foundation,” said midfielder Maximilian Arnold.
Group G with Wolfsburg, FC Sevilla, OSC Lille and Red Bull Salzburg is certainly not the most sonorous of the eight Champions League groups. However, their clubs have set standards in defending themselves against the ever increasing dominance of a few large clubs in Europe. For example, Lille replaced the mighty Paris Saint-Germain as French champions last season, which is even more difficult than leaving Bayern Munich in Germany or Real Madrid behind in Spain.
In 19 years under the sporting director Ramon Rodriguez Verdejo (called Monchi), Sevilla generated transfer revenues of more than 200 million euros in ruinous Spanish football, without the team ever becoming much weaker. And the Wolfsburg-based company doesn’t just have the huge amount of money from its parent company Volkswagen. You have also been using it very sensibly for the past three years.
Wolfsburg on the way to the top team
«We must have great respect for them. You have made a huge development, “said the Swedish international Ludwig Augustinsson in a” picture “interview. The 27-year-old moved from Werder Bremen to Seville in the summer. “When I came to Germany four years ago, they were fighting in the relegation relegation. After that it became more and more uncomfortable to play against them. “
The Wolfsburg now have a squad that should also make an impression on Seville’s manager legend Monchi. Nine top players, seven of whom have national team experience and four of whom are only 25 years old or less, are fighting over the four offensive positions. «We are not yet a top team. But we’re on the way there, ”said coach Mark van Bommel.
The questions before the Sevilla game are now: Will the Spaniards’ greater international experience have an impact in this even group? And has Wolfsburg’s self-confidence suffered from the last three games against TSG 1899 Hoffenheim (1: 3), Eintracht Frankfurt (1: 1) and OSC Lille (0: 0)? “I didn’t say that for nothing after the Hoffenheim game: We’re not FC Bayern Munich,” said Arnold. “We are still missing a lot. We have to repeat our success over the years – that’s hard enough. ” Sevilla FC is a tough test for this. But also a role model.
The probable lineups:
VfL Wolfsburg: Casteels – Mbabu, Lacroix, Bornauw, Roussillon – Guilavogui, Arnold – Baku, Waldschmidt, L. Nmecha – Weghorst
FC Sevilla: Bono – Jesus Navas, Koundé, Diego Carlos, Acuna – Jordan, Fernando, Rakitic – Lamela, Rafa Mir, Ocampos
Referee: Georgi Kabakov (Bulgaria)