Barcelona scores four and defeats Espanyol on the Copa del Rey quarter-final
Barcelona wins the derby against Espanyol in the quarter-final of the Copa del Rey. By 4-1, with two goals from Messi, one from Piqué and one from Neymar Jr., the culé team makes the joy of the blaugrana fans in Camp Nou. Now the team will face Granada, this Saturday (09), for the Spanish Championship.
First half -
Early on the second minute of game, Neymar Jr. has performed Barça’s first finalization, but the ball went out. The new confrontation between the rivals from the same city would prove a difficult duel. At seven, Messi left the number 11 in front of the goal, but the keeper threw himself on the ball and blocked the shot.
It didn’t take long until the first goal came out, however, it was not Barcelona that would celebrate. On the ninth minute, on an Espanyol counterattack, Asensio ran into the area and made the pass for Caicedo to open the score at the Camp Nou. Barcelona took revenge soon after. After 13 minutes, Iniesta recovers the loose ball from Suarez and throws it to Lionel Messi. The argentine ties the game and end Espanyol’s advantage.
The duel was agitated and the two teams met incredible opportunities to score, but did not. After 23 minutes, Neymar Jr. nearly scored his first goal of the year. After exchanging passes with Iniesta, the ace is released in the area, kicks and it almost reaches the net.
The Derbi climate grew tense because of the faults and the game has undergone several stoppages. At the end of the first half, 42 minutes, Lionel Messi went for a free kick near the penalty area. For the shock of the Espanyol fans, the Argentine scored an amazing goal, making his second on the game at Camp Nou. No extras and trying to calm the teams’ tempers, the referee blows the whistle, announcing the end of the first half.
Second half –
The second half started with the advantage for Barcelona. Just four minutes and Messi finds the space to make the pass for Gerard Piqué to mark the third for the team. The atmosphere at Camp Nou remained tense, with both teams suffering shortages after faults.
Despite the good start of the culé team in the second half, the pace of the match slowed down and the finishes didn’t go so well. After 15 minutes, Iniesta and Neymar Jr. exchange passes again. Neymar Jr. accelerates to the area and passes for Messi to finish, but the Argentine could not do it and the ball goes out.
After 20 minutes, Messi is fouled near the area. In the free kick, the number 10 deceives the enemy barrier and Neymar Jr. kicks it. The ball goes too accurate on the left, but Pau López saved his team. 29 minutes into the game, Neymar Jr. dribbled the markers and invaded the area from the left to make the pass to Suárez. The Uruguayan kicks, but Pau López makes the save again.
After a corner kick charged by the number 11, on 36 minutes, the goalkeeper falls to the ground and Suárez takes the opportunity to try and score his, but misses the header. Barcelona pressed, but the opponent prevented in every way. Until, after 42 minutes, Neymar Jr. took one for the team. The Brazilian tabled with Messi and, after a beautiful aerial assistance, completed in the right corner, scoring his first goal on the year.
After four minutes of extra time and no more goals to complete the massacre in the derby, the referee blows his whistle and the game ends.