Life is less simple without Fernando Reges. This is how Sevilla feel, who have in the Brazilian one of their main assets for defensive reliability and who has already starred in several days without him on the pitch due to injury. Julen Lopetegui continues to hunt for solutions to solve the loss of a pillar in the balance of his system. And the numbers show a reality: the team conceded goals in its last five games despite the fact that it is still the least scorer in the entire League. For his coach, the need to find that support is urgent for the league closure with the aim of tying that Champions League place for next season as soon as possible.
Lopetegui has been giving his trust to Joan Jordán in recent weeks in that somewhat more sustained role of central midfielder. In the last duels, he played alongside Ivan Rakitic in midfield and with Papu Gómez as a means of freedom in creation. But the doubts are still on the table and it is striking that Gudelj, Fernando’s natural substitute in that pivot, has barely had opportunities as a starter due to the Brazilian’s loss. The Serbian has not appeared in the Nervionense eleven since the 0-0 signed against Real Sociedad in March. The match against Villarreal presents new questions for Lopetegui: the coach intends to recover the reliability at the back that he seemed to lose in recent weeks and there could be changes in his game bet. Thomas Delaney, also a substitute in the last few games, has the chance to enter the fray and give the Nervionenses more balance.
*Data updated as of May 5, 2022
Not only does Sevilla look at the present. Also an open road to the future regarding the figure of Fernando. The club knows that it needs a piece of weight for its next project that is capable of giving the Brazilian more air in midfield. Despite being indispensable, Lopetegui is aware that the physical rhythm of the entire season weighs on the midfielder and that there was no replacement with high guarantees in his current squad. Monchi already moves in the market on the hunt for a player who can limit this dependence on the team for the next campaign.