Another surprise in the third round of the cup, with Mallorca knocked out of the competition after only drawing 1-1 with second division Córdoba. A goal down from the first leg, Sergio Kresic's side needed to win at the San Moix stadiun to go through, and they started well, with Eto'o opening the scoring early in the game from Campano's corner. However Cámara made it all square in the second half, and the home side were unable to break down the Andalucians' defence even though Biagini and Chichi Soler went close near the end.
All other first division sides went through, with Athletic Bilbao the first to do so on Wednesday night after beating Sporting Gijon 2-0. Top striker Urzaiz switched from goalscorer to provider and he set up both goals in the second half, the first for Julen Guerrero just after the restart and the second for Yeste later on. Bilbao have the second best cup history behind Barcelona, but this is the first time they have reached the last eight of the competition for four years.
Villarreal are relative newcomers to the later stages of the cup, and they reached the quarter finals for only the second time ever after defeating Sporting Gijon 3-1. With a two goal lead from the first leg Víctor Muñoz gave some of his non-regular players an outing, but they fell behind to a Soto goal with only a quarter of an hour gone. However Cagna made it all square, and after Isma got sent off for the visitors for a second bookable offence, two goals from Quique Martín late in the second half ended Sporting's good cup run.
Valladolid also had no trouble finishing off Badajoz, ending the game with a 3-0 victory after winning the first leg 1-3 a week ago. Luis García set up Oscar for the opener in the first half and scored himself after the break, and then Fernando Sales wrapped things up with the third ten minutes from the end. The game was a financial disaster for the first division side, with total gate money of only around 100,000 Pesetas (6,000 Euros) from the smaller than usual 4,500 crowd.
Rayo Vallecano only just scraped through 1-0 against second division B side Cuidad de Murcia thanks to a last minute goal from Bolo. The first leg had finished 0-0, and it looked as if the tie would go into extra time before Michel found the gap to set up the Basque born striker. Despite a pitiful performance by their side the small home team crowd celebrated the victory enthusiastically, glad of a bit of respite to allow them to forget their troubles at the bottom of the first division.
In the all second division B tie, Figueres went through to the last eight for the first time in their history after drawing 0-0 at Novelda. Despite the result it was an open game, with the Alicante side claiming a penalty in the second half for a foul on Madrigal which would have taken them through on away goals after losing 2-1 in the first leg. Figueres held on though to become the first side from their category to reach the quarter finals since Numancia in 1995, and ensure that Cataluña has at least one representative in Friday's draw. (19.12.01)
Real Madrid went through to the last eight of the cup with a harder than expected 4-2 victory over Gimnàstic Tarragona. Having lost the first leg 1-0 Del Bosque put out an almost full strength side, hoping to reach the final in March which will be played in their own stadium in celebration of their centenary year. However they went further behind when Nàstic's new signing Angel Cuéllar beat Casillas in the second minute, and although Raúl headed Zidane's cross past Moso two minutes later Herrero turned in Cuéllar's pass to give the visitors a surprise lead with only a quarter of an hour gone. By half time Madrid were in front though, with Guti holding off Marcelo to level the scores on the night, and then Raúl taking advantage of a mistimed header by Tomás to lob the ball over Moso on the stroke of half time.
Madrid still needed another goal but it did not take long in coming, Guti rounding the keeper as he came out of his area to lay the ball across for Raúl to score his hat-trick. After that the league champions slowed the game down, but a bad back pass from substitute Munitis five minutes from the end let in Castillejo, and Casillas was forced to bring him down only inches outside of the area. Referee Carmona Méndez had no doubts in producing the red card for the young keeper, and with César injured Del Bosque sacrificed Figo to bring on number three 'portero' Carlos Sánchez. However Marcelo drove the free kick wide, and Madrid went through much to the chagrin of the 2,000 or so Nàstic fans who made the long trip from Tarragona. (18.12.01)