Barcelona: Cillessen; Mascherano (André Gomes 11’), Piqué, Umtiti, Jordi Alba; Rakitic (Aleix Vidal 83’), Busquets, Iniesta; Messi, Paco Alcácer, Neymar. 4-3-3.
Alavés: Pacheco; Kiko Femenía, Vigaray, Rodrigo Ely, Feddal, Theo Hernández (Oscar Romero 79’); Edgar (Camarasa 59‘), Marco Llorente, Manu García, Ibai Gómez (Rubén Sobrino 59‘); Deyversen. 5-4-1.
1-0. 30. Messi. Connected with Neymar pass and curled shot pastPacheco.
1-1. 33. Theo Hernández. Struck long free kick over Cillessen and in to net.
2-1. 45. Neymar. Got on the end of André Gomes cross to turn ball over line.
3-1. 45+3. Alcácer. Shot on turn past Pacheco following good run by Messi.
Yellow cards: Edgar 16’, Manu García 39’, Umtiti 39’, Rodrigo Ely 49’, Rubén Sobrino 76’, Messi 76’, Iniesta 76’, Deyverson 88’.
Barcelona are champions of the Spanish cup for the third season in a row and the 29th time in their history after they beat Alavés 3-1 on Saturday evening! The Vitoria based side were playing their first Copa del Rey final in their history, and their enthusiastic fans outnumbered those from the Condal City, who didn’t even take up their full quota of tickets (although they did make a lot of noise booing the Spanish national anthem, as always). Luis Enrique had to shuffle his team around when Mascherano went off early on with a head injury after a clash off heads with Llorente, and a few minutes later the Basque side came close to scoring when a shot from Ibai Gómez hit the post and came off the back of Cillesson to role along the goal line. However with half an hour on the clock Messi latched on to Neymar’s pass to beat Pacheco, and although Theo Hernández made it all square with a well struck free kick, Neymar restored the lead after substitute André Gomes crossed in from the right. Before the half time whistle Paco Alcácer added a third following a good run from Messi, and only a good save by Pacheco prevented the striker from scoring again soon after the restart. Alavés did put on more pressure in the second half, Deyverson having a goal ruled out for offside and Sobrino having a couple of shots blocked, but Barça were not going to give this one away, and Luis Enrique had his first title of the season in his last game in charge before moving on to pastures new. The Alavés fans stayed on at the end though to cheer their side in what was the club’s most important game since that classic UEFA cup final against Liverpool some sixteen years ago.