Álvaro Negredo was in a revealing mood this week, saying that Sevilla's short spell under Marcelino lacked authority: "It was a really undisciplined dressing-room. Not because of any bad people, but for details which mean that a team doesn’t work well. The boss has talked about it: we weren’t getting to training at the right time, people were coming late." The international striker went onto explain that it took time for current boss Michel to gain his own control. Perhaps the frank and honest admission that he was involved in the negative attitude was the most surprising. "I wasn’t exactly a saint either," Negredo said.
Cristiano Ronaldo clearly has a message of his own that he is attempting to deliver. It's coming in the form of a dripping tap, as he cleverly tries to position himself amongst the highest earners in world football. He is without doubt in the top three in terms of talent and performance, but it's certainly ill-timed for the fans as Spain's economy struggles.
Injuries to José Antonio Reyes, Babá Diawara and Diego Perotti mean Michel is expected to name largely the same side that started at Vallecas. Diego Lopez could return in goal following a suspension, despite the good form of Andres Palop in the previous match. Only the suspension of Fabio Coentrao denies José Mourinho of a full squad to choose from. New signing Luka Modrić will probably make way for Mesut Özil.
Sevilla have started the season in buoyant form; they are unbeaten in their opening three fixtures. It's too early to draw any positive conclusions, however, as they have had better starts in their last four seasons and still not reached full potential.
Ronaldo may have overshadowed Real's first league win of the season against Granada, with his non-celebration following a brace and the continuous "people know why I'm sad" comments within the mixed zone, but the result was crucial even at this early stage. Even with that win, they are five points behind Barcelona, and pressure will increase for Los Blancos to go on a winning run.
The last two times this fixture has been played at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, the final score has been 2-6. It's extremely unlikely to happen again, but you get get 160.00 on that scoreline. Ronaldo contributed to seven of the 12 goals netted and can be backed at 3.50 to open the scoring.
Negredo enjoys playing against his former side, having slotted home three of the four goals that Sevilla had notched in those two defeats. He's at 3.00 to get another.
Gonzalo Higuaín scored in Argentina's two international games last week, and has also scored in all three of Real Madrid's league matches to date. He might start on the bench for this one, given the travelling he has done, but whether he is substitute or starter, his strike rate at the moment warrants a look at his odds. You can back him to score during the 90 minutes at 2.10.
This is the first real test of Sevilla's season. It's difficult to see them winning, as the whites look to maintain contact with Barcelona at the top. They may have one eye on Manchester City coming to town on Tuesday, but the strength of their squad should see them through. A Real Madrid victory is at 1.60.
The previous five meetings in Seville between the teams have seen Real outscore their opponents 17 to 10. 27 goals in five matches gives some tasty offers in the over goal market. Over 2.5 goals is on at 1.50, over 3.5 goals is 2.20 or a more lucrative over 4.5 goals can be backed at 4.00.
Sevilla 1-3 Real Madrid (12.50)