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Wednesday, November 29, 2023
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Sevilla stumbles again after draw

BARCELONA, SPAIN (AP) – Sevilla slipped again in its chase of Spanish league leader Real Madrid after being held to a scoreless draw at struggling Alavés early yesterday.

Only some good goalkeeping by Yassine Bounou in the first half ensured a misfiring Sevilla salvaged a point from the trip to Vitoria.

It was a fourth straight draw on the road in the league for Julen Lopetegui’s side. Sevilla’s attack never got going in a poor showing for a team that is squandering its opportunity to add to its sole league title from 1946.

Alavés winger Edgar Méndez produced the best scoring chances of the first half. Bounou blocked a shot by Luis Rioja in the 13th minute after he was set up Méndez, who also crossed for Gonzalo Escalante to head wide. Bounou closed quickly to stuff an effort by Méndez in a one-on-one situation five minutes into the second half.

Pere Pons was next to waste a great opportunity for the hosts when he received the ball inside the area, only to also steer the ball off-target.

Sevilla defender Jules Koundé went close to cueing a last-gasp winner after he dribbled past his marker on the right side of the box and squared the ball for Munir El Haddadi in the 89th. But the Morocco forward failed to get the ball past Fernando Pacheco on consecutive point-blank shots blocked by the goalie.

Sevilla next faces West Ham in the Europa League final 16. Alavés crept into 18th place, still in the relegation zone.


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