Villarreal boss Marcelino is concerned over the aggression shown by Sevilla’s midfielders ahead of their Europa League Last 16 first leg clash.
The teams meet at El Madrigal on Thursday and Marcelino believes the combative nature of the Sevilla players could be a cause for concern.
“There were too many interruptions when we met in the League because of the fouls their midfield players were committing,” he told a Press conference.
“Those fouls went unpunished until they finally received yellow cards in the 80th minute. But we’ll be trying to keep the ball on the ground and hope their midfield pair don’t commit half a dozen fouls without it going unpunished, which is what happened.
“Sevilla are powerful in the air and we’ll be trying to avoid situations where they could punish us. We’ve have to play really well if we want to win.”
Nonetheless, the 49-year-old, who coached Sevilla during the 2011-12 season, feels the clash is the tie of the round and is targeting a place in the next stage before looking at any long-term objectives.
“It’s a very attractive game and being in the Last 16 is a motivating factor for us. Our intention is to make the quarter-finals and we’re not thinking of anything but getting a good result in the first leg and the return.
“Our aim is to win but we must look at the circumstances before setting any targets. There are a number of clubs in the competition who have a better chance of getting to the final than us and Sevilla are one of them.
“However, that’s not to say we can’t do it. It’s a long way off and we are only at the Last 16 stage.
“We’ll need to be efficient and enjoy some luck if we are to get through each round,” he conceded.