Copa del Rey, quarter finals
Athletic Bilbao are the third side to make it through to the semi-finals after beating Valladolid 0-1 in the Nueva Zorrilla stadium. Defending a 3-2 lead from last week, the Basques were in control for most of the game, and put the result beyond the reach of their opponents with a Yeste penalty after Rafa fouled Etxeberría twenty minutes from the end. (03.02.05)
Betis are through to the semi-finals, but only by the skin of their teeth! Their second division B opponents Gramanet just didn't know when to lie down, and they fought back right up until the last minute before finally losing 4-3 on the night. After a 2-2 draw in the first leg, it appeared that the first division club were on the way to a comfortable victory when they went two goals up midway through the first half, Fernando opening the scoring after Morales failed to hold on to Edu's shot, and Rivas heading a second from Assunçao's free kick. But Miki pulled one back after the break, and although Oliveira restored the two goal cushion, Rubén Blaya reduced the gap to one goal again just a few minutes later. Again Assunçao seemed to have wrapped things up with a free kick five minutes from the end, but Aaron scored a third goal for his side to give the home fans the fright of their lives.
Betis will not be joined by their city rivals Sevilla in the semi-final draw though after Joaquín Caparrós's side were beaten 3-1 by an Osasuna side who are making a habit of knocking them out of the competition. The Andalusians 2-1 advantage from the first leg was cancelled out midway through the first half when Valdo got on the end of Clavero's cross to head past Notario. The visitors threw on all their attacking force, but Cuéllar put the home side further ahead when he headed home a long free kick from Pablo García twenty minutes from the end. And Muñoz wrapped things up on a quick breakaway two minutes from the final whistle before substitute Makukula got back a consolation goal in the dying seconds.
Numancia and Atlético Madrid played out a 0-0 draw in their first leg match, which was postponed from last week due to a heavy snowfall. Both sides put out defensive line ups with three central defenders on a tricky pitch, and chances were few and far between throughout the game. Salva and Fernando Torres both went close as the visitors dominated the first half, but the locals felt themselves unlucky to have a penalty appeal turned down when Perea handled in the area before the break. Rafa Jorda and Richard Nuñez hit the woodwork at either end after the restart, but otherwise there was little to report, and everything will now be decided in the Calderón stadium in a fortnight's time. (02.02.05)