Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has warned his players they must continue to make sacrifices as his side look to extend their lead at the top of LaLiga with victory at Sevilla on Saturday.

Ancelotti has deployed some players in unfamiliar positions with Eduardo Camavinga and Aurelien Tchouameni moved back into defence and Rodrygo admitting he was not happy playing at centre forward.

But with a tough schedule ahead including next week’s El Clasico, Ancelotti made no apologies for his positional switches and said he would continue to ask his players to put the interests of his team first.

Ancelotti told a press conference: “It’s important to know where each player wants to play, and sometimes the demands of the team mean that some players have to make sacrifices.

“Camavinga, Tchouameni or Rodrygo have done that. Rodrygo is a complete forward and can play in the centre, as he did at Napoli. My idea is that the team’s demands come first and then the individual’s.”

Ancelotti’s men headed into the international break on the back of four straight wins and the Italian admitted he was concerned that they would be able to regain that momentum as speculation continues to swirl over his future.

“The team’s on a good run and it’s going to be an important week,” said Ancelotti, whose side also face a Champions League trip to Portugal to face Sporting Braga.

“I’m worried about quite a few things this week. The Sevilla game will be very demanding. They’ve changed coach and they have a lot of quality in their squad. It’s going to be a tough match.

“I’m more concerned that we might have forgotten what we did before the international break. We were playing well and I hope we can get back to the same level.”

Saturday’s game, which represents Real’s 3,000th in LaLiga, will also bring Ancelotti face to face with Sergio Ramos, who was integral to Ancelotti’s success during his first spell at the club between 2013 and 2015.

And Ancelotti admitted that he probably would not have got a second crack at the Madrid job had Ramos not scored the famous stoppage-time equaliser in their 2014 Champions League final with city rivals Atletico, which they went on to win.

“I love seeing him and saying hello,” added Ancelotti.

“Obviously, all the players I’ve had I’m very fond of, and I am especially of him. If he hadn’t scored in the final in Lisbon, I probably wouldn’t be here.

“For everything he’s done, I think everyone’s very fond of him, especially me. He’ll have a great game because he’s got real quality.”

Sevilla have sacked manager Jose Luis Mendilibar.

The Europa League holders drew 2-2 with Rayo Vallecano in LaLiga on Saturday, leaving them 14th with two wins, two draws and four defeats.

Mendilibar was hired in March but has become the club’s third manager to be dismissed inside 12 months.

The 62-year-old guided Sevilla away from relegation danger with a 12th-placed finish last season and beat Jose Mourinho’s Roma on penalties in May to clinch their seventh Europa League title.

Sevilla’s next match after the international break is a trip to Real Madrid before they host Arsenal in the Champions League.

Former Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos put through his own net to hand Barcelona a 1-0 win against Sevilla.

Xavi’s side looked set for a second LaLiga draw in succession following their midweek 2-2 clash at Mallorca before Ramos’ own goal with 14 minutes remaining.

The win takes Barcelona top of the table, one point ahead of Girona and two clear of Real Madrid, who travel to Girona on Saturday.

Following the draw at Mallorca on Tuesday, Xavi made four changes with Robert Lewandowski returning to the starting line-up. Jules Kounde partnered Andreas Christensen in defence, while 16-year-old Lamine Yamal was also handed a start.

For Sevilla, Ramos, 37, who returned to his boyhood club last month following 16 years at the Bernabeu and two seasons with Paris St Germain, was among five changes for his side’s trip to Barcelona’s temporary home at the Montjuic Olympic Stadium.

Sevilla arrived for Friday night’s fixture unbeaten in their last four outings and fresh from a 5-1 midweek demolition job of Almeria, but it was the hosts who enjoyed the best of the opening exchanges with Joao Felix involved.

First the Portuguese forward, on loan from Atletico Madrid, forced Orjan Nyland into a fine save following a low drive. And then midway through the opening period, Felix rattled the woodwork from six yards out after neat build-up play by Joao Cancelo.

Substitute Fermin Lopez then wasted a good chance just minutes before the interval when his shot from Yamal’s cross was straight at a thankful Nyland.

After the break, the chances continued to fall the way of the hosts, with Lewandowski’s close-range shot saved by the legs of Nyland on the hour mark before the impressive Yamal then dragged an effort wide. Moments later, Lewandowski’s shot was headed clear by Loic Bade.

Barcelona might have been wondering if it was going to be one of those nights but with 75 minutes gone, they were handed a lifeline.

Yamal’s header back across goal from Ferran Torres’ cross dropped into Ramos’ path and the ex-Real defender, who netted five times in 33 appearances against Barcelona, inadvertently scored past Nyland.

From there, a shell-shocked Sevilla never looked like getting back in the match as Barcelona saw out the game, including five additional minutes, to claim top spot in LaLiga.

Barcelona boss Xavi wants his side to defend better as they prepare for their LaLiga clash with Sevilla on Friday.

Barca are currently unbeaten in the league so far this term but have conceded four goals in their last two games, coming from behind to beat Celta Vigo 3-2 before a 2-2 draw with Mallorca.

Despite their recent defensive flaws, Xavi’s side have scored 18 goals, which is the joint most in the division alongside league leaders Girona.

The Barca boss acknowledged those differences but thinks his side have to improve at the back.

He said: “We might not be as brilliant in defence as we were last season.

“We need to improve our pressure after losing the ball, press higher up the pitch, concentrate a bit harder.

“But we have got better up front. We created six clear chances against Mallorca and I think that’s good baggage.”

The Catalan giants will face a Sevilla side who, after a tough start to the campaign, are starting to show their true colours and are currently unbeaten in three.

Xavi praised their opponents on Friday and has called on the home fans to be the 12th man.

He added: “Sevilla are the defending Europa League champions and a difficult team to play.

“They’re solid, they like to play down the wings and play a direct, vertical game. But we’re at home.

“We need the fans and the atmosphere at Montjuic to get back on the winning track.”

A win for Barcelona could take them top of the league temporarily before the top two, Girona and Real Madrid, face each other on Saturday.

Xavi is not surprised by how well current league leaders Girona are doing.

He continued: “It’s no surprise to me because they have been doing things well at that club for several years.”

The disgraced former president of the Spanish Football Federation [RFEF] Luis Rubiales was not worthy of representing his country, according to Sevilla vice president Jose Maria del Nido.

Rubiales was widely condemned for his behaviour as Spain celebrated their victory over England in last month's Women's World Cup final, having grabbed forward Jenni Hermoso before kissing her on the lips.

Hermoso repeatedly stated the kiss was not consensual and has since filed a criminal complaint against Rubiales, accusing him of sexual assault.

Though Rubiales initially refused to resign, the pressure eventually told as he announced his departure ahead of an interview with Piers Morgan, which aired last week.

Sevilla became one of the first clubs to demand Rubiales' resignation on August 25, and Del Nido believes the events have left a stain on the reputation of Spanish football. 

Speaking at the Thinking Football Summit, Del Nido told Stats Perform: "Instead of everyone talking about the success of being world champions, being the best in your sport at a global level, it's a complete failure that we should be talking about events that are totally unacceptable, of a person who should not represent the Spanish Football Federation. 

"Instead of paying attention to the damage that the attitude of the president of the federation has done, I would stay with the attitude that the Spanish people have had. 

"I think it is true that this hurts the reputation of Spain, but Spain is not Luis Rubiales. 

"Spain is everything we have manifested against the behaviour of Rubiales, everything we have done to support Jenni. 

"This type of conduct cannot be accepted under any concept, and even less if it is a person who occupies a status or a position of that magnitude. 

"He is not worthy of representing the Spanish Football Federation. Spain has spoken out against this event in a very good way. 

"I will finish as I started. What we have to do is congratulate the Spanish women's team for becoming World Cup champions, which is the only thing that should be discussed."

Despite the exits of Rubiales and World Cup-winning coach Jorge Vilda – who was sacked earlier this month having been the subject of player revolts – the storm surrounding the RFEF is far from over.

A group of 81 Spanish players announced their intention to boycott international duty and 39 said they would continue to strike for further changes on Friday, with Hermoso claiming "nothing has changed" at the governing body on social media.

However, six of the players who agreed to strike reported at Spain's training camp on Tuesday, with goalkeeper Misa Rodriguez telling reporters she was not glad to join up with the squad as she arrived. 

With the relationship between women's rights and Spanish football under the microscope, Getafe completed the controversial loan signing of Manchester United's Mason Greenwood this month.

Greenwood was arrested and charged with attempted rape, assault and controlling and coercive behaviour last year, with the charges dropped in February after the withdrawal of key witnesses.

While Del Nido was not prepared to comment on Getafe's decision to sign Greenwood, he said Sevilla never considered a move for the forward.

"I read about it in the press and it was never among the options that the sporting director of Sevilla [Victor Orta] managed," Del Nido asserted.

"With it not being within the options of the sporting director of Sevilla, I don't dare to speak about a signing for another club, Getafe, for whom we have a lot of respect. 

"They have made some signings but we have never valued the option of that footballer at a sporting level, so I have nothing to say about that."

Greenwood made his Getafe debut as a substitute on Sunday as they beat Osasuna 3-2 in LaLiga.

Sevilla vice president Jose Maria del Nido has hailed the club's "prodigal son" Sergio Ramos for rejecting a huge offer from Saudi Arabia in order to return to his boyhood team. 

Ramos came through Sevilla's youth system before making his La Liga debut for Los Nervionenses as a 17-year-old in 2004. 

The defender made 39 league appearances for Sevilla before joining Real Madrid in a controversial €27 million move in 2005, going on to win five league titles and four Champions Leagues with Los Blancos. 

After struggling with injuries during a two-year stint in Ligue 1 with Paris-Saint Germain, Ramos was heavily linked with a move to Al-Ittihad, where he could have been reunited with former Madrid team-mate Karim Benzema.

Despite reportedly being offered around €19m per year to join the Saudi champions, Ramos made an emotional return to Sevilla earlier this month, and Del Nido says the club will not forget the sacrifice he made.

Speaking at the Thinking Football Summit, Del Nido told Stats Perform: "We are very happy with Sergio's return.

"First and foremost, we have a great central defender that will help us achieve the objectives we have set for this season. 

"He is a player who was raised in Utrera's youth academy, in Sevilla's youth academy, and he is a player who comes back home as a prodigal son. 

"He is a player with a lot of media attention but the most important thing is the individual and team titles he has won.

"He is a player who has a worldwide impact. We are really happy for him to end as he started. We've signed a great football player and a player that is a Sevilla supporter."

Asked about Ramos rejecting a move to Saudi Arabia, Del Nino added: "Words are really beautiful and really simple to say, but in life, in the end, things are demonstrated with facts. 

"The fact that Sergio has given up a lot of money to play for Sevilla shows the commitment he has, the desire he has, as he said, to hear the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan chant his name. 

"He has shown it with a lot of effort. He waited until we had the money to bring him to the club, then he gave up two economic offers that multiplied the amount he was going to be paid at Sevilla. 

"He has shown his commitment to the club and it is another reason for satisfaction. As we have said, we can only thank him for the effort he has made, among other things, at an economic level."

Ramos made his second Sevilla debut against Las Palmas on Sunday, 18 years and 20 days after playing his last league game for the club against Racing Santander in August 2005.

While Del Nido was delighted to see Ramos reject Al-Ittihad's advances, he believes the financial might of Saudi Pro League sides offers an opportunity for clubs like Sevilla to generate funds.

"We have seen a strong eruption of the Arab market," he said. "They say that clubs from this league invested €600m to €700m. One of the players was our goalkeeper, Yassine Bounou [who joined Al-Hilal].

"We are a club that sells to grow, so the fact there is another league that invests in good footballers is good for us. 

"We have sold good players to Madrid, Barcelona, and clubs of different leagues with a higher economic magnitude than Sevilla and we have continued to compete.

"Now the key is to see if this league is prolonged in time and continues to inject money in Europe. 

"It is true that a player who has earned x millions of euros there, more than what we can pay… that can cause you to not access these players. 

"But the policy we have is to sell to grow. The more leagues invest in good footballers, and if they are from Sevilla, the better for us."

Sergio Ramos has returned to boyhood club Sevilla after signing a one-year deal with the Andalusian club.

The 37-year-old former Spain and Real Madrid captain, a free agent after leaving Paris St Germain in June, has returned to Sevilla 18 years after leaving to join Real Madrid.

Sevilla announced on their official website that Ramos had passed a medical on Monday morning before signing a 12-month contract.

LaLiga club Sevilla said: “Sevilla FC have reached an agreement for the signing of Sergio Ramos.

“The academy graduate is returning to the club 18 years after he signed for Real Madrid in 2005, aged 19.”

Ramos progressed through Sevilla’s academy, making his first-team debut as an 18-year-old, and went on to make 49 appearances in all competitions before joining Real Madrid in 2005 for £23million.

He scored 101 goals in 671 appearances in total for Madrid during a trophy-laden 16 years, which included five LaLiga titles and four Champions League wins, before joining PSG on a two-year deal in 2021.

Ramos, who won two Ligue 1 titles with PSG, made a record 180 appearances for Spain, scoring 23 goals, and won both the World Cup, in 2010, and the European Championship, twice, in 2008 and 2012.

Manchester City won their first silverware of the campaign as Pep Guardiola’s side survived a sloppy start to triumph on spot-kicks against Sevilla and lift the UEFA Super Cup.

Having lost the Community Shield to Arsenal on penalties 10 days ago, last season’s swashbuckling treble winners initially wilted in the Greek heat versus the Europa League holders.

Youssef En-Nesyri put Sevilla ahead and City rode their luck, only to draw level through Cole Palmer’s looping header as their maiden Super Cup appearance ended 1-1 after 90 minutes and went to a shoot-out.

The first nine penalty takers all converted before Nemanja Gudelj smashed his effort off the crossbar, seeing Guardiola’s Champions League winners triumph 5-4 on spot-kicks in Piraeus.

The Spaniard became the first manager to win the Super Cup with three different teams and equalled Carlo Ancelotti’s record of four competition victories as coach.

City are the sixth English side to lift the trophy but were made to sweat by Jose Luis Mendilibar’s Sevilla, who went ahead through En-Nesyri’s powerful first-half header.

The LaLiga outfit could easily have grabbed a second during a strong start to the second period, only for man of the match Palmer to equalise with a header.

Sevilla survived a late City onslaught but could not avoid a sixth straight Super Cup defeat as the match passed midnight in Greece and went to penalties at the Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium.

Midfielder Kevin De Bruyne was the most notable absentee from the travelling party for Manchester City’s UEFA Super Cup clash with Seville after being struck down by a hamstring injury.

De Bruyne limped out of Friday night’s 3-0 Premier League win at promoted Burnley with a recurrence of the problem which prompted his early withdrawal from last season’s Champions League final, and City boss Pep Guardiola later revealed the 32-year-old Belgium international would be sidelined for “a few weeks”.

The club is yet to provide an update on the severity of the damage, but the midfielder’s name was conspicuous by its absence from the 22-man squad list for Wednesday night’s game in Athens when it was published on City’s official website on Monday afternoon.

De Bruyne has been one of City’s key performers since his £55million arrival from Wolfsburg in August 2015, and is widely regarded as one of the most accomplished midfielders in world football.

There was no place either for midfielder Bernardo Silva, the only other member of the matchday squad at Burnley who was not included, or central defender Ruben Dias, who was not involved in the opening league fixture under concussion protocols.

Kalvin Phillips and Jack Grealish, who were unused substitutes at Turf Moor, did make it, as did the versatile John Stones, who sat out on Friday evening through injury.

Squad (in number order): Kyle Walker, Kalvin Phillips, John Stones, Nathan Ake, Mateo Kovacic, Erling Haaland, Jack Grealish, Aymeric Laporte, Rodrigo, Stefan Ortega Moreno, Julian Alvarez, Sergio Gomez, Josko Gvardiol, Manuel Akanji, Ederson, Maximo Perrone, Scott Carson, Phil Foden, Oscar Bobb, Cole Palmer, Rico Lewis, James McAtee.

Jose Mourinho's behaviour and the subsequent abuse of Anthony Taylor by Roma fans has led to former Premier League referee Mark Halsey calling for stricter punishments.

Taylor and his family were verbally and physically targeted at Budapest airport in the wake of Roma's Europa League final defeat to Sevilla.

Both teams felt aggrieved by some of Taylor's decisions in the game, but Mourinho was particularly vehement, and was filmed shouting abuse at the official long after the final whistle had blown.

Halsey was infuriated by what he saw.

"Everybody that's seen the footage or watched the game, I thought both teams' conduct with their players and the coaching staff was appalling," Halsey told Stats Perform.

"On the night I thought Anthony [Taylor] and his team had a superb game under the most difficult of circumstances. When players don't want to listen, it makes it so very difficult for the referee.

"The referee can only referee what's in front of him. If I was being ultra critical, perhaps they should have removed team officials from the bench. But having said that, I thought they were outstanding on the night.

"Obviously, the criticism of him in the car park when [Mourinho] volleyed abuse again, I think it's appalling, and Roma fans having seen that, I think that's what led to the scenes that we saw at the airport. As much as everybody loves Jose Mourinho, you cannot do that. You cannot condone these actions. 

"I think in the cold light of day, when he sits back down and looks at himself and his family looks at the way he behaves, I think they will think that he deserve everything that's coming his way regarding punishments."

Now, Halsey wants governing bodies such as UEFA to crack down on the abuse by enforcing points deductions.

He continued: "That was a showcase. The Premier League, the Champions League, Europa League are watched around the world by millions and millions of people, including children.

"In England, we have a problem at a grassroots level, we have a problem with youth football, we have a problem with parents. They watch that, and think they can get away with it.

"This season we've seen over £1.5million worth of fines dished out for player and team officials' behaviour on the field of play. Out of the 92 clubs, 52 have been charged £1.5m in fines. What does that tell you? That tells you that the fines are not working. 

"So we've got to start with the points deduction right at the very top. In fact, that goes for if you're playing the Champions League.

"If Roma are in the Europa League next season, and Sevilla are in the Champions League, they've got to start with a points deduction. [They've] got to hit the clubs in the pocket, and take the points away.

"Those points could stop them qualifying for the knockout stages. They've really got to come down hard on them."

As for Mourinho, Halsey hopes the Roma boss faces a significant punishment.

He said: "I just think it was absolutely appalling. I've never seen a game like that and a referee treated like that anywhere.

"Even in my time as an official, I never ever got treatment like that, and I refereed all over the world. That's why I think that UEFA has got to come down extremely hard on Roma and José as well as Sevilla for their behaviour on the field of play."

Jose Mourinho and Roma must take responsibility for their actions over the abuse of referee Anthony Taylor after the Europa League final, says Ref Support UK chief executive Martin Cassidy.

The Giallorossi were defeated on penalties by Sevilla following an ill-tempered 1-1 draw last Wednesday, bringing their coach's perfect record in continental finals to an end.

Mourinho lambasted Taylor's performance, with the Roma coach confronting the official following full-time, before fans harassed him at Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport afterwards.

Cassidy, who leads a charity that offers support to match officials, suggested Mourinho's conduct exacerbated matters, and that both him and his club need to own up to their actions.

"My reaction was shock, but not surprise," he told Stats Perform. "I just hope that Anthony and his family are well and safe. To see the way it's manifested itself [is awful].

"I believe Jose Mourinho needs to take a chunk of responsibility here for this gerrymandering he has been doing that's resulted in this. Roma fans don't need any encouragement to behave in the way that the video has shown.

"It'd be really good to see Roma come out and condemn misbehaviour. I haven't seen it. It'd be really good if Jose Mourinho would come out and condemn this behaviour.

"It'd be great to see where UEFA are in this and what they want to do and what went wrong. Hundreds of referees go out each season abroad [and] we don't have these situations happen.

"It wouldn't take a genius to figure out that that was going to be a very hostile situation for Anthony."

Cassidy also reiterated fears that the abuse surrounding Taylor could have a further negative effect on grassroots officials, who already are forced to deal with harassment and improper conduct.

"How he kept his manner so calm when that was going on just shows the strength of character and emotional intelligence that Anthony Taylor has got," he added.

"[But] we're talking about the guy who had worldwide praise for how he responded to Christian Eriksen when he collapsed on a pitch.

"This isn't some run-of-the-mill, meat-and-two-veg ref we are talking about here. If he can find himself in these situations, what hope have grassroots referees got?

"It's a terrible end to the season for him. It should have ended on a highlight. You know if it wasn't for Manchester City getting to the Champions League final, I dare say that Anthony Taylor would have been doing [that].

"He will be devastated that it's ended this way, when it should be on an absolute peak of achievements. But I really believe that he will be getting supported.

"It's going to take a long time for [him] to get over his family being in that position. I think it'll take a long time for anyone to get over.

"Praise to him, he never reacted, he was controlled. He looked after his family and he got them out of that situation. But shame on Roma and shame on Jose Mourinho."

Jose Mourinho should be suspended from coaching and Roma barred from European competitions following the "disgraceful" harassment of Anthony Taylor after Wednesday's Europa League final.

That is the view of Martin Cassidy, chief executive of Ref Support UK – a charity committed to supporting officials – after Taylor was abused following Roma's penalty shoot-out defeat to Sevilla.

Roma boss Mourinho was fiercely critical of Taylor's performance as Sevilla won a record-extending seventh Europa League title via spot-kicks following an ill-tempered 1-1 draw in Budapest.

Thirteen players were booked during the match, while Gonzalo Montiel scored his winning penalty at the second attempt after Rui Patricio was punished for encroachment after initially saving his kick.  

Mourinho was seen shouting expletives at Taylor after the game, and the English official was harassed by Giallorossi supporters when at Budapest Airport with his family.

Speaking to Stats Perform, Cassidy outlined the strong punishments he would like to see issued to coaches who abuse officials. 

"I'd be interested to speak to the legal people in UEFA and FIFA, to see if they could take their coaching badges away from them," Cassidy said.

"Take it away from them. Say, 'I'm sorry, we are going to suspend your badge, you can't coach at that level'. Let's see what that does.

"Obviously, big legal challenges will come that way. But let's have things in place to say, 'Look, a stadium ban is not working on you and one or two fines when you are a multimillionaire are not going to bother you'. 

"Let's really hurt you, let's take you away from being able to coach, let's suspend your coaching badge. Job done."

Cassidy believes Mourinho's behaviour is being replicated by grassroots coaches, and says his club should be barred from Europe or handed a points deduction for next season. 

"It's just disgraceful," he added. "How many chances does this man [Mourinho] want before some national governing body or UEFA or FIFA take appropriate action against him? 

"This behaviour he shows manifests itself at grassroots level when there's a youth referee in the middle, and little mini-Mourinhos are on the sidelines repeating and replicating those antics. 

"It's not good at all. And I just think, the managers – it's not just Jose Mourinho – other people do it and have been doing for a long time… they throw in a small fine, it might be £100 or £1,000. 

"That's a small fine for some of these people, for some of them it is not even a week's wages. They throw in a ban, well, Jose Mourinho has been banned before from stadiums and still found a way of doing his coaching.

"What are UEFA going to do? I think don't allow them to play in Europe next year. 

"If they do allow them to play in Europe, let's have them on a minus points deficit of say three or four points, let's just have a message that is different to what we've been doing previously."

Refereeing body PGMOL says it is appalled by “unjustified and abhorrent” abuse directed at Anthony Taylor after video footage emerged of him being accosted by angry fans at Budapest Airport.

Taylor and his family can be seen trying to evade a mob, who were shouting at him as he travelled home after refereeing Wednesday night’s Europa League final between Roma and Sevilla in the Hungarian capital.

The Premier League official was criticised for his performance in the final by Roma boss Jose Mourinho during his post-match press conference after the Italian side lost on penalties to Sevilla.

And in video footage which later emerged on social media, the former Chelsea and Manchester United manager is seen gesticulating at Taylor and officials in the stadium car park and heard saying “disgrace”.

In the incident at the airport, clips on Twitter show a chair and drinks being thrown in the direction of Taylor and his group as they make their way through a gathering of Roma fans.

The Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) said in a statement on Thursday evening: “PGMOL is aware of videos circulating on social media showing Anthony Taylor and his family being harassed and abused at Budapest Airport.

“We are appalled at the unjustified and abhorrent abuse directed at Anthony and his family as he tries to make his way home from refereeing the UEFA Europa League final.

“We will continue to provide our full support to Anthony and his family.”

UEFA is awaiting Taylor’s reports before deciding whether to take action against Mourinho for his rant.

Taylor booked Mourinho during the game, which finished 1-1 after extra time before Sevilla sealed their seventh Europa League triumph by winning 4-1 in a penalty shoot-out.

Tempers simmered on and off the pitch in a disappointing final, with 13 players shown yellow cards, seven of them to Roma players, while fourth official Michael Oliver had his work cut out to keep control of both dug-outs.

The game was littered with delays, with a total of 25 minutes’ stoppage time added to the 120 minutes of playing time.

Refereeing body PGMOL says it is appalled by “unjustified and abhorrent” abuse directed at Anthony Taylor after video footage emerged of him being accosted by angry fans at Budapest airport.

Taylor and his family can be seen trying to evade a mob, who were shouting at him as he travelled home after refereeing Wednesday night’s Europa League final between Roma and Sevilla in the Hungarian capital.

The Premier League official was criticised for his performance in the final by Roma boss Jose Mourinho during his post-match press conference after the Italian side lost on penalties to Sevilla.

And in video footage which later emerged on social media, the former Chelsea and Manchester United manager is seen gesticulating at Taylor and officials in the stadium car park and heard saying “disgrace”.

Following the incident at the airport, the Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL) said in a statement on Thursday evening: “PGMOL is aware of videos circulating on social media showing Anthony Taylor and his family being harassed and abused at Budapest Airport.

“We are appalled at the unjustified and abhorrent abuse directed at Anthony and his family as he tries to make his way home from refereeing the UEFA Europa League final.

“We will continue to provide our full support to Anthony and his family.”

UEFA is awaiting Taylor’s reports before deciding whether to take action against Mourinho for his rant.

Taylor booked Mourinho during the game, which finished 1-1 after extra time before Sevilla sealed their seventh Europa League triumph by winning 4-1 in a penalty shoot-out.

Tempers simmered on and off the pitch in a disappointing final, with 13 players shown yellow cards, seven of them to Roma players, while fourth official Michael Oliver had his work cut out to keep control of both dug-outs.

The game was littered with delays, with a total of 25 minutes’ stoppage time added to the 120 minutes of playing time.

Sevilla's aura in the Europa League is similar to the fear Real Madrid instil into Champions League opponents, says Steven Nzonzi.

Jose Mourinho's Roma were the latest team to fall foul of Sevilla in a Europa League final as the Andalusian side extended their remarkable record of wins in UEFA's second-tier club competition to seven.

Only five teams – Madrid, Barcelona, Milan, Liverpool and Bayern Munich – have won more major European honours than Sevilla, who beat Roma 4-1 on penalties after a tightly contested 1-1 draw in Budapest.

Nzonzi, who helped Unai Emery's Sevilla beat Liverpool in 2016 to seal a third straight Europa League crown, believes the club have now created such an air of dominance in the tournament that they can be compared to Madrid, who have won the Champions League/European Cup on 14 occasions.

He told Stats Perform: "I don't know if they are the greatest team, it is hard to say but, of course they are one of the best teams to play in that competition.

"I really feel they have that energy that experience going on in that competition and it makes them win, it reminds me of Real Madrid in the Champions League.

"Real Madrid are another level and the won the Champions League more [times] than Sevilla won the Europa League but [Sevilla are] one of those teams when they are in that competition, you feel like anything is possible and they can win it."

Asked why Sevilla are able to sustain such success in the Europa League, Nzonzi replied: "It's really hard to say because sometimes you play against other teams that are better than you.

"They may play better or on paper have better players than you but you are still the one ending the game or winning the competition.

"I think it's the whole vibe, the whole energy going on, in the changing room, in the club there is a confidence because if you already won it one, two, three, four, five, six times, you have the confidence to win it again and feel that you are the superior team in that competition.

"Then there is the fans. I watched the semi-final and when Juventus played in Sevilla, I looked at the fans and I said, 'They [Juve] are not winning, the fans are just so good'. They are just pushing you so much, it is very difficult for the other team to feel confident.

"I think the big thing with Sevilla is the fans. I feel it is a big part of the energy that is happening for them in the Europa league.

"I remember going to the stadium and having a lot of fans not stopping the bus, but following the bus. [In the 2015-16 final] there were much more Liverpool fans in the stadium, but we still could feel the energy of the Sevilla fans."

Sevilla were embroiled in a relegation scrap in LaLiga until Jose Luis Mendilibar replaced Jorge Sampaoli in March, and while they are set for a mid-table finish, their Europa League triumph means Champions League football beckons next term.

"It feels like the Europa League has big things to do with Sevilla, because it is just incredible," Nzonzi added. 

"And I think it is even better because they are not qualifying for the Champions League through LaLiga."

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