Real Sociedad and Sevilla will square off at the Reale Arena on Sunday, having both made impressive starts to the La Liga campaign.
The hosts bounced back from an opening defeat to record three straight victories in the Spanish top flight, while their visitors arrive with seven points from their first three outings.
After a fifth-placed finish last season, Real Sociedad were handed a tough start to the new campaign, as they made the trip to the Camp Nou to take on title-chasing Barcelona, and Imanol Alguacil’s men were handed a 4-2 defeat, despite Julen Lobete and Mikel Oyarzabal scoring in the final 10 minutes to pull the scoreline back to 3-2 and give themselves a small chance.
La Real quickly bounced back in style though, recording consecutive 1-0 victories over Rayo Vallecano and Levante, before making it three straight wins when they travelled to take on Cadiz.
Following the return from the recent international break, the clash between Cadiz and Alguacil’s side remained goalless for 70 minutes, until Oyarzabal put the visitors ahead and later added a second to seal their third three-point haul of the season after four games.
On the back of collecting nine points from their opening four games, they headed into their opening Europa League group stage clash with Dutch outfit PSV Eindhoven on Thursday, and Adnan Januzaj and Alexander Isak put them ahead after Mario Gotze’s opener for the hosts, only for Cody Gakpo to net a second-half equaliser and force a share of the spoils.
Now returning to domestic action, Alguacil’s men will be keen to continue their momentum with what would be a fourth straight win on Sunday, but they face a particularly tough test.
Sevilla arrive with seven points from their opening three league outings, having started with a 3-0 win over Rayo Vallecano as Youssef En-Nesyri opened the scoring before Erik Lamela netted a brace off the bench to seal the victory.
Lamela was again the star as Julen Lopetegui’s men made it two wins from two, with the winger hitting a 93rd-minute winner to fire his side to a 1-0 victory over Getafe, before they were held to a somewhat underwhelming 1-1 draw by Elche in their most recent La Liga match, stopping a winning run from growing.
Similarly to their opponents, Sevilla were also in continental action in the week, as they kicked off their Champions League campaign with a home clash against Austrian champions Red Bull Salzburg, and they came out of a game that produced four penalties with a 1-1 draw.
The visitors won three spot kicks in the first half but only managed to convert one to take a 1-0 lead, before Lopetegui’s side earned a penalty of their own, with Ivan Rakitic beating the keeper to see the game end level.
They now return to top-flight action with the hopes of extending an unbeaten run against a side that they could be battling for similar spots with at the end of the season.
Real Sociedad La Liga form:
Real Sociedad form (all competitions):
Sevilla La Liga form:
Sevilla form (all competitions):
We say: Real Sociedad 1-1 Sevilla
With two strong sides in impressive form squaring off, this could certainly go either way, and we cannot quite pick a winner on Sunday.
The two teams boast quality all over the pitch, and, while Sevilla might have the slightly superior squad depth, La Real’s home advantage should level the playing field.