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Sevilla and Juventus look to complete Group H job

Sevilla and Juventus have dominated Group H from the start and, with the third-placed team four points behind, both can take the final step to qualification on matchday five.

Gonzalo Higuaín and Adil Rami dispute possession on matchday one
Gonzalo Higuaín and Adil Rami dispute possession on matchday one ©AFP/Getty Images

The two dominant sides in Group H meet again on matchday five, with Sevilla FC knowing a win will clinch first place while a Juventus victory will guarantee them one of the qualifying berths.

• On opening night the teams drew 0-0, Gonzalo Higuaín coming closest to breaking the deadlock with a header against the crossbar. 

Previous meetings
• The teams also met in last season's group stage, when Sevilla won their home game 1-0 thanks to Fernando Llorente's 65th-minute winner which consigned Juve to second place in Group D.

• The lineups in Spain on 8 December 2015 were:
Sevilla: Rico, Coke, Rami, Kolodziejczak (Mariano Ferreira 57), Trémoulinas, N'Zonzi, Krychowiak, Banega, Vitolo, Konoplyanka (Krohn-Dehli 68), Llorente (Gameiro 77).
Juve: Buffon, Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini, Lichtsteiner (Cuadrado 77), Marchisio, Alex Sandro, Sturaro, Pogba, Dybala, Morata.

• The earlier fixture went the Turin side's way, Álvaro Morata and substitute Simone Zaza scoring in a 2-0 win.

Match background

• Los Blanquirojos beat Olympique Lyonnais on matchday two thanks to Wissam Ben Yedder's second-half goal. Against GNK Dinamo Zagreb they first won 1-0 away and then 4-0 at home.

• Sevilla have a two-point lead at the top and will progress to the knockout rounds with a draw.

• Last season Unai Emery's side put the disappointment at only finishing third in Group D to one side by lifting the UEFA Europa League for the third successive year and fifth time in 11 seasons.

• In the 2015/16 UEFA Champions League Sevilla got two wins at home, where they lost 3-1 to Manchester City FC. They lost all three away.

• In the UEFA Europa League the Andalusian club won three of their four home matches en route to the final in Basel, where they overcame Liverpool FC 3-1. Their only stumble at the Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán came in the quarter-finals against Athletic Club, going down 2-1 after winning away by the same score. Sevilla came through the shoot-out 5-4.

• In winning their fourth UEFA Europa League/UEFA Cup in 2015, Sevilla surpassed Juventus's three titles and became the club with most triumphs in the competition outright.

• On matchday two the Bianconeri equalled their biggest ever away win in the UEFA Champions League, winning 4-0 at Dinamo Zagreb.

• In the double header with Lyon, they first won 1-0 away and were then pegged back late on at home in a 1-1 draw. If Lyon fail to beat Dinamo, Juve will qualify regardless of what happens in Spain.

• Apart from the Sevilla loss, the 2014/15 runners-up won at Manchester City in last season's group stage and drew 1-1 at VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach. They finished runners-up in Group D behind City.

• In the round of 16 the two-time European champions drew 2-2 at home to FC Bayern München, succumbing 4-2 away in extra time.

• Two seasons ago Juve faced three Spanish sides, losing 1-0 at Club Atlético de Madrid in the group before a 0-0 draw in the return. They fared better against Real Madrid CF, winning 2-1 at home in the semi-finals en route to a 3-2 aggregate triumph. The Turin club then lost the final 3-1 to FC Barcelona.

• They have lost three and drawn one of their last four visits to Spain. Away to Liga opposition their record is W3 D5 L15 and overall it is W17 D13 L20.

Coach and player links
• Dani Alves played for Sevilla between 2002 and 2008, winning the UEFA Cup twice and the UEFA Super Cup and Copa del Rey in 2006. He then played for FC Barcelona before joining Juve this summer, winning the Copa del Rey against Sevilla in his last game in Spain.

• Also played in Spain:
Mario Mandžukić, Atlético (2014/15)
Sami Khedira, Madrid (2010–15)
Gonzalo Higuaín, Madrid (2007–13)

• Salvatore Sirigu, Gianluigi Buffon's deputy in the Italian national team, played for US Città di Palermo between 2007 and 2011, where he was a team-mate of Andrea Barzagli.

• Franco Vázquez was with Palermo from 2013 to 2016 and during that time was the attacking partner of Paulo Dybala.

• Also played in Italy:
Joaquín Correa, UC Sampdoria (2015/16)
Adil Rami, AC Milan (2014/15)

• Players who have also played together:
Miralem Pjanić & Timothée Kolodziejczak (Lyon 2008–11)
Pablo Sarabia & Khedira, Higuaín (Madrid 2010/11)

• International team-mates:
Benoît Trémoulinas, Rami, Sami Nasri & Patrice Evra (France)
Matías Kranevitter, Gabriel Mercado & Gonzalo Higuaín, Paulo Dybala (Argentina)
Salvatore Sirigu, Franco Vázquez & Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini, Claudio Marchisio, Stefano Sturaro, Barzagli (Italy)

• Vitolo scored against Buffon in Spain's 1-1 draw with Italy in a FIFA 2018 World Cup qualifier at the Juventus Stadium on 6 October. Barzagli and Leonardo Bonucci also played for the hosts.

• In the 2015 Copa América final, Higuaín missed a penalty for Argentina in the shoot-out defeat against Jorge Sampaoli's Chile.

Match facts

• Nicolás Pareja will incur a suspension with his next booking.

• Sevilla suffered their first defeat in seven games in all competitions when they were beaten 2-1 by Barcelona on 6 November, a result that also ended their 100% home record this season.

• Vitolo, who opened the scoring against Barcelona, was on target in Spain's 4-0 victory over FYR Macedonia on 12 November in the European Qualifiers for the FIFA World Cup.

• Mario Lemina returns from a one-match suspension.

• The Bianconeri had failed to keep a clean sheet in five matches prior to Saturday's 3-0 triumph over Pescara Calcio.

• A free-kick by Pjanić 15 minutes from time gave Juventus a 2-1 win at AC Chievo Verona on 6 November.

• Giorgio Chiellini (thigh) has not played since limping off 39 minutes into the 2-1 victory against SSC Napoli on 29 October but was on the bench at the weekend.

• Dybala (right thigh) and Marko Pjaca (left fibula) are not expected to return from their respective injuries until December.

• Barzagli will be out for around two months after dislocating his left shoulder against Chievo.

• Mandžukić found the net in Croatia's 3-0 friendly win against Northern Ireland on 15 November.

• Buffon equalled Vitālijs Astafjevs and Iker Casillas's European record of 167 caps when he took to the field for Italy's friendly against Germany on 15 November, when Mario Lemina equalised in Gabon's 1-1 draw versus the Comoros.

• On the same day, Dani Alves made his 100th appearance for Brazil as they recorded a 2-0 success against Peru in World Cup qualifying.

• Khedira opened the scoring in Germany's 8-0 triumph over San Marino on 11 November.

• Buffon is on the 23-man shortlist for the Best FIFA Men's Player 2016 award. The winner will be announced on 9 January.