Sevilla 3-2 Real Betis: The Seville derby is a must-have experience for anybody who truly loves football


Sevilla 3-2 Real Betis: The Seville derby is a must-have experience for anybody who truly loves football

In a time when football is becoming depressingly sanitised and commercialised, the Seville derby is an authentic, passion-driven experience that towers above the rest.

Close to midnight, there were still Sevilla fans waiting outside the Ramon Sánchez-Pizjuán, their derby weekend not quite over until they had cheered every last player off into the night. Empty beer bottles lay strewn across every second inch of ground.

For many the event had started way back at midday.

It was a derby day to remember in Seville

Seven goals, 12 hours, two clubs, two matches, one derby. Unrivalled in Spanish football, and quite possibly anywhere else. Unlike some showpiece games, there is no need for excessive marketing to make the Andalucian capital’s big fixture compelling.

When Sevilla and Real Betis meet, it matters.

With their nine trophies since 2006, the side in red and white are Spain’s fourth club of the 2000s; five Europa Leagues earn them a place among Europe’s elite.

Their eternal rivals in green and white may envy the silverware count, but they make up for it in pure popularity: Betis have the fourth highest number of supporters’ clubs of any Spanish side and their fans are spread across the length and breadth of the country. Surveys rank them as the fourth most popular team there among all supporters.

“From fathers to sons, grandfathers to grandsons, a passion named Betis,” the slogan goes.