Register Login Live

International

Barca's Copa Stutter

Barcelona made heavy weather of their Copa del Rey defence last night, drawing 2-2 at home to Malaga in the first leg of their quarterfinal tie.

The Blaugrana mauled Malaga 3-1 away in La Liga last weekend, but their changed line-up stuttered in the Copa.

Tito Vilanova’s side started well, but Malaga held on and poached the lead when Manuel Iturra robbed Thiago Alcantara of the ball just outside the box and slotted home past Pinto.

Barca reacted swiftly, and Lionel Messi drew them level just three minutes later.

Messi- who showed his four Ballons d’Or to the crowd before the game- latched onto a loose ball on the right, burst into the box, and fired a trademark curler into the back of the net.

Barca took a lead into the second half, when a minute after Messi’s goal, skipper Carles Puyol looped a header into Malaga’s goal.

So comfortable at home this season, Barca must have felt they had secured a first-leg advantage.

But they shipped a late equaliser when Ignacio Camacho was left unmarked in the 90th minute, to clip Malaga back into the tie.

After their sloppiest home display of the season, Barca will now have to lift their game to last weekend’s level for the second leg at La Rosaleda, if they hope to remain on course for a likely semi-final mega-clash with Real Madrid.

88 comments

Top 5

10 Richest African Footballers In The World, Past & Present

7 Mar 11, 2021 07:19 PM in African Football

Chiefs Keeper Leaving?

26 Apr 14, 2021 08:44 AM in Kaizer Chiefs

All Eight Teams To Have Qualified For CAFCL Quarters

123 Apr 10, 2021 11:30 PM in African Football

8 Pirates Players At Risk Of Missing Crucial Downs Clash

27 Apr 13, 2021 04:01 PM in Orlando Pirates

Tau Opens Up On PSL Return

87 Apr 12, 2021 03:06 PM in Players Abroad

Report: Ball Boy That CR7 Gave Shirt To Will Be Punished

9 Apr 14, 2021 10:27 AM in Messi/Ronaldo/Neymar Watch

15 Ex-Downs Stars Who've Simply Just Disappeared

5 Apr 15, 2021 08:55 AM in Mamelodi Sundowns

Chiefs Keeper Leaving?

26 Apr 14, 2021 08:44 AM in Kaizer Chiefs

20 Chiefs Players Who Moved Overseas

5 Apr 14, 2021 08:02 AM in Kaizer Chiefs

The Highest-Paid African Stars In The EPL

18 Feb 02, 2021 07:14 PM in English Premier League

Benni’s Usuthu Compensation

17 Apr 14, 2021 12:51 PM in Bafana

12 Players Who Went Bankrupt

23 Dec 07, 2020 12:34 PM in World News

'Its A Privilege' - Mabaso Honours Late Ex-Pirates Star

1 Apr 13, 2021 01:01 PM in Orlando Pirates