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Copa del Rey

Semi final, first leg

Real Sociedad 1 - Barcelona 1

Real: Zubikarai; Zaldúa, Mikel González, Ansotegi, José Angel; Zurutuza, Gaztañaga (Elustondo 66’); Carlos Vela, Xabi Prieto (Canales 81’), Griezmann; Seferovic (Chory Castro 60’). 4-2-3-1.
Barcelona: Pinto; Dani Alves, Piqué, Mascherano, Jordi Alba; Xavi (Alex Song 65’), Busquets (Marc Bartra 88’), Iniesta; Pedro (Alexis 76’), Messi, Fàbregas. 4-3-3.

0-1. 27. Messi. Picked up ball in midfield and ran on to force shot past Zubikarai.
1-1. 87. Griezmann. Got on the end of Chory Castro cross to curl shot past Pinto.

Yellow cards: Busquets 25’, Carlos Vela 30’, Gaztañaga 51’, Zurutuza 55’, Fàbregas 89’.

The cup final everyone has been waiting for will take place between Spain’s big two after Barcelona drew 1-1 at Real Sociedad in the second semi-final. A packed crowd turned up at the Anoeta stadium hoping for their team to overturn the 2-0 scoreline from the first leg, but their dreams were shattered when Messi ran through from midfield to score a vital away goal midway through the first half, Zubikarai getting a hand to his shot but unable to prevent the ball from rolling back in to the net. That meant that the Basque side needed to score four, an impossible task even though Carlos Vela did his best, the Mexican forward having an effort cleared from in front of goal by Dani Alves before the break, and then curling a shot against the bar soon after the restart. Only a string of great saves by Zubikarai prevented Messi, Fàbregas and Alves from adding to the lead in the second half however, but Griezmann was thwarted at the other end by Mascherano and Pinto before he finally levelled the scores after Canales and Chory Castro combined to set him up. Too late to save the game, but at least it inspired the home fans (who had been waiting 26 years since they last got this far in the competition), and they sang their hearts out through to the final whistle. Barcelona and Real Madrid meet for the seventh time in the final though, with honours shared 3-3 to date, and as things stand it looks like Valencia’s Mestalla stadium will be the venue for the latest “clásico” between the two giants of Spanish football.