Rene, the de facto numbers guy amongst our cadre of writers, has often pondered this season whether qualifting via the league or winning the Europa is a better path to returning to Europe this year. He hasn’t weighed in with another post closely examining the numbers, but I think I’ll take a stab at it for the time being: the league doesn’t matter any more. We are currently in 7th place, and since we’re in the Copa final against a team that’s definitely going to be in the Champion’s League, we know that that place will be good enough for a Europa League spot next year. We’re 7 points ahead of 8th, so with 6 games left that’s not a pressing concern, and for that matter we’re now 3 points behind 6th place (12 from Champions League, if you’re wondering if you should stop wondering about that).
So then. Sevilla travels to [the rest of this sentence doesn’t matter, they are traveling, so you know we are going to lose, they could be traveling to my house to play just me 1v11 and still they would lose] this weekend, and as far as I can tell the only things that matter are to protect our 7 point cushion for getting into our safety competition if we don’t make it back to the Champions, and not doing anything to jeopardize our semifinals matchup with Shakhtar in a couple weeks. That includes not injuring or overly working anyone important, but I suppose also not letting anyone get into too big of a slump.
That is all the thoughts I have about this game. Vamos [by not screwing anything up too badly]!!!!!