Three games on Thursday, with Villarreal failing to impress again after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Puertollano. Valdés put the second division B side in front with only twelve minutes on the clock when he turned in Acorán's cross, but they were left with ten men when Pelegrina was sent off for a foul on Jonathan Pereira just a minute after the restart. Pires equalised a few minutes later with a shot from outside of the area, but with a quarter of an hour to go Marcos Senna went off injured with all three changes made, and a minute after that Nilmar got his marching orders for elbowing Encimas.
Racing Santander are not having the best of seasons, and a 1-0 defeat at the hands of second division Salamanca left coach Juan Carlos Mandía in the firing line. Christian had a goal disallowed for offside, but second choice keeper Coltorti had to be at his best to save from Linares and Laionel either side of half time. With three minutes to go however Coltorti was sent off for bringing down Linares, and with no substitutions left, right back Pinillos had to go in goal. He could do nothing to stop Salva Sevilla's spot kick though, leaving the Cantabrians with an uphill battle for two weeks' time.
Valladolid have the edge over Mallorca after beating the Balearic Islanders 2-1 in one of the matches between first division teams. With only three minutes on the clock the locals went ahead, César Arzo scoring from close up after a long ball was headed on. Martí made it all square from the penalty spot after Keita was fouled by Barragán, but substitutes Nauzet and Diego Costa combined for the latter to restore the lead with ten minutes to go. (29.10.09)
After Real Madrid's debacle on Tuesday, all eyes were on Barcelona's visit to Cultural Leonesa. However Guardiola's side didn't let him down, a 0-2 victory virtually ensuring a place in the last sixteen. The coach rested his first choice front three, but Bojan battled through to set up Pedro for the opener close to half time, the fifth competition he has scored in this season. Jito tested Pinto a couple of times, but Pedro got his second of the night after a cross from the left by Jeffren, who had started as a makeshift right back. After that they could have scored more, but the work had already been done for the defending champions.
Last season's runners-up Athletic Bilbao are in danger of being knocked out though after a 2-0 defeat at Rayo Vallecano. Néstor Susaeta got one over on his more famous cousin, opening the scoring with a well struck free kick in only the fifth minute, and Pachón scrambled home the second a quarter of an hour later. Local keeper Dani had his work cut out after that, but his opposite number Armando also had to make a couple of late saves to limit the damage to just two goals.
Two other first division sides, Tenerife and Almería, lost to lower ranked opposition on Wednesday. Tenerife were beaten 2-1 by Celta, who dominated most of the opening period. The Galicians scored twice in three minutes midway through the first half, Saulo turning in a Dani Abalo cross and Michu heading in Danilu's corner. Richi got ahead of keeper Yoel to head in Ayoze's free kick though on the stroke of half time. Leaving the tie open for the second leg in a fortnight's time.
Almería also lost 2-1 at Hércules, Sergio Díaz heading the winner for the locals from Sendoa's free kick in the last minute of the game. José Ortíz put Hugo Sánchez's team ahead shortly before half time, turning the ball past Unai Alba after Chico had headed on a corner. But Danciulescu equalised after Del Olmo set him up ten minutes after the restart, and Esteban had to make a couple of good saves before Sergio beat him for a second time at the end.
Valencia are on the road to the last sixteen though after beating second division B side Alcoyano 0-1. Joaquín took over the captain's armband and opened the scoring, lifting the ball over Maestro with ten minutes on the clock. Alexis suffered a serious injury though, and keeper Moyà had to be on his toes after that to maintain the result.
Deportivo also won 0-1 against second division side Murcia, a result which could signal the end for local coach José Miguel Campos. Lopo headed the only goal from Sergio's corner with a quarter of an hour to go, although visiting keeper Manu had a busy night before that, and Albiol could have levelled the scores when he hit the bar with a free kick near the end,
There were three ties as well between first division sides, with Zaragoza and Málaga restoring a bit of dignity after drawing 1-1. Both teams had lost badly at the weekend, but the locals went ahead when Lafita got ahead of young debutant Iván González to head past Santamaría with twenty minutes on the clock. Apoño equalised from the penalty spot though with a quarter of an hour to go after Ponzio handled in the area.
Getafe won 2-0 against Espanyol in the battle between two clubs who have done well in the cup in recent years. Nakamura and Manu both had chances before the break, but Albín opened the scoring early in the second half after latchingon to a cross from Pedro León. Gavilán headed in Soldado's chipped cross soon afterwards, and Iván Alonso came close to getting one back when he headed against the post later on.
Osasuna are another side who have set their hopes on the cup, and they are on the way to the next round after beating Xerez 1-2. Within twenty minutes they were two up, Sergio beating Chema following a corner and Dady heading in at the far post from Juanfran's cross, and a strike from substitute Maldonado midway through the second half was not enough to change the result. (28.10.09)
A sensational result in the Spanish cup on Tuesday evening, the mighty Real Madrid losing 4-0 to neighbouring second division B side Alcorcón. Despite putting out a line-up led by Raúl and Benzema, Pellegrini's team fell behind to an angled shot from Borja early on. Arbeloa turned across from Rubén Sanz in to his own net soon afterwards, and Bejar headed against the post before Ernesto got the third after Cascón set him up close to half time. Borja got his second of the night seven minutes after the restart, and Cascón should have scored a fifth before the final whistle. There were calls for Pellegrini's head after the match.
Madrid's city rivals Atlético avoided a similar pit-fall though with a 0-2 victory against a Marbella side who have in the past had strong connections with the club. Quique Flores was in charge for the first time, and his side took the lead when Troyano turned Ujfalusi's cross past his own keeper with just under twenty minutes gone. Sinama and Jurado both rattled the woodwork in the first half, but it was not until seven minutes from the end that Maxi got the second with an angled shot after picking up a pass from Simao.
Sevilla also had no trouble seeing off Atlético Ciudad 2-4, although some shaky defensive work did allow the Lorqui based team to score twice. Guille Roldán took advantage of a quick throw in to give the hosts an early lead, but Luis Fabiano scored twice in a minute soon afterwards to turn the scoreline around. Roldán levelled the scores once again, but strikes by Jesús Navas and Diego Capel before the break virtually wrapped up the tie.
Recreativo and Sporting Gijón shared the honours in a 1-1 draw, and everything now depends on the return match in the Molinón stadium in a couple of weeks' time. Candeias turned in a cross from Barrales early on to put the locals ahead, but Bilic brought a good save out of Bernardo before he finally beat the keeper in the second minute of the second half after connecting with a centre from Kike Mateo. (27.10.09)