Rakitic met his wife in the city and speaks excellent Spanish with a Sevillano accent. The Croatian was intent to prove that his return was sporting as well as sentimental.
It’s been difficult for him to maintain a high level of performance so far this season, but he showed a moment of class to give his team the lead against Valencia on Tuesday evening.
Sevilla 3-0 Valencia at half time in the Copa del Rey. One club – with a modern, ambitious and innovative sport structure – are a masterclass on how to run a football club. The other is a disaster-class on how to run a football club.
— Colin Millar (@Millar_Colin) January 27, 2021
The pair were locking horns in the Copa del Rey, the winner set to go through to the quarter-finals, at the Sanchez-Pizjuan.
The Andalusians currently sit fourth in La Liga, and look a good bet to qualify for next season’s Champions League. Valencia, by comparison, are 14th, in a difficult moment in both an institutional and sporting sense.
Sevilla started well, scoring an early brace through Luuk de Jong, before Rakitic stepped up with a gorgeous chip, shared by Caught Offside, to make it 3-0. It was the kind of goal that underlined the old adage that form is temporary but class is permanent.