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Barcelona and Real Madrid dumped out of Copa del Rey in night of shocks

The 30-times winners were upset by Athletic, while Real Sociedad stunned Real Madrid at the Bernabeu

Jack Rathborn
Friday 07 February 2020 09:08 GMT
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Messi appears dejected as Athletic strike late
Messi appears dejected as Athletic strike late (REUTERS)

Record 30-times winners Barcelona were stunned by Athletic Bilbao to exit the Copa del Rey in a 1-0 defeat thanks to Inaki Williams' stoppage-time header.

Spanish striker Williams buried a chance into the bottom corner to spark pandemonium at a lively San Mames stadium. The win brought back memories of Aritz Aduriz’s added-time goal in another 1-0 win over the Catalans on the first day of the Liga season.

They join fellow Basque club Real Sociedad along with Granada and second-tier Mirandes in Friday’s semi-final draw, which will not include Real Madrid, Barca or Atletico Madrid for the first time in 17 years.

The defeat piles on the pressure on Barca after a tough week where captain Lionel Messi hit out at sporting director Eric Abidal and forward Ousmane Dembele picked up another hamstring injury to end his season and leave Quique Setien with limited options.

Barca defender Gerard Pique said the team needed to show unity and refrain from in-fighting, adding that the performance, if not the result, proved that they had moved on from the saga.

“Now is not the time to air our dirty laundry, all I can say is we have 100% confidence in ourselves and we are pleased with how we played today and how we have reacted in the face of all this noise,” he said.

“It’s very tough to have been knocked out but we can take a lot of positive things from the game.”

Messi appears dejected as Athletic strike late (REUTERS)

Real Madrid were also dumped out after losing 4-3 at home to Real Sociedad in a hugely entertaining game which saw two goals ruled out by video technology and a late red card for the visitors.

Sociedad’s Sweden forward Alexander Isak inspired an incredible attacking display, scoring twice in the second period, setting up the fourth goal for Mikel Merino and also having a strike ruled out for offside.

Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard, who is on loan from Madrid, had given the visitors the lead midway through the first half, following up on the rebound after home keeper Alphonse Areola could only parry a long-range effort from Isak.

Vinicius Jr reacts as Real Madrid fall to Real Sociedad (REUTERS)

Defender Marcelo quickly pulled a goal back for the hosts after Isak’s quick-fire brace to make it 3-1, beating keeper Alex Remiro at the near post moments after receiving a volley of boos from the home fans for his haphazard display.

But rampant Sociedad soon restored a three-goal cushion when Isak teed up Merino for a simple tap-in after 69 minutes.

Madrid substitute Rodrygo pulled a goal back in the 81st to make it 4-2 after his Brazilian team mate Vinicius Jr had a strike ruled out for offside following a VAR review, while Nacho struck in added time for the hosts to set up a tense finish.

Sociedad defender Andoni Gorosabel was sent off in stoppage time but Madrid, who are top of La Liga, could not find an equaliser and suffered their first defeat in any competition since losing 1-0 at Real Mallorca on Oct. 19.

Reuters

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