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Spanish La Liga

Messi Hands Barca First Leg Advantage

Spanish Copa Del Rey

First Leg Quarterfinal

Full Time: Barcelona 1-0 Atletico Madrid

Date: 21 January 2015

Venue: Camp Nou

A goal five minutes from time by Lionel Messi saw Barcelona run out 1-0 winners over Atletico Madrid in a first leg Copa del Rey quarterfinal match at Camp Nou on Wednesday night.

Barcelona controlled the possession stakes in the opening half, but failed to make their dominance count.

The home side created their first chance on goal as early as the fifth minute after some swift passing from Messi and Luis Suarez set Neymar through on goal, but he was brilliantly thwarted by the Atletico Madrid keeper.

Ten minutes later Ivan Rakitic played Messi into space on the edge of the box and the Argentine showed great skill to fashion a shot from an acute angle that went narrowly past the post.

As the half progressed Atletico began to find their footing and finished the stronger of the two sides.

In the 39th minute Antoine Griezmann met a left-wing cross with a strong header, but his ten-yard effort skimmed the top side of the crossbar.

A minute later Luis Suarez should have scored for Barcelona when he broke behind the Atletico defence, but he fired over the target with just the keeper to beat.

The visitors had the last say of the half two minutes before the break when Fernando Torress made his way past the last defender, but instead of shooting in a one-on-one with the keeper he tried to square for Griezmann and Barcelona just cleared their lines.

The half ended 0-0.

The second half saw Atletico produce a great defensive performance as they kept the Barcelona attack at bay.

There were very few chances in front of goal as the home side dictated terms.

Barcelona did manage to fashion a chance in the 75th minute when Andres Iniesta let loose with a low shot from the edge of the box, but the keeper produced a good save diving to his left.

Ten minutes later Barcelona were rewarded for the consistent pressure when Juanfran pulled Sergio Busquets down inside the box and the referee pointed to the penalty spot.

Messi stepped up and saw his initial penalty-kick saved by the keeper, but he was quickest to rebound and tapped home for the victory, 1-0.


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