Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Football | Spain

Manuel Iturra © Action Images

Barca held to Cup draw by Malaga



Holders Barcelona squandered a chance to all but seal a probable King's Cup semifinal showdown with Real Madrid when they conceded a late goal to draw 2-2 at home to 10-man Malaga in their last-eight first-leg match on Wednesday.

Barca beat Malaga 3-1 in La Liga on Sunday and coach Tito Vilanova and his Malaga counterpart Manuel Pellegrini both rested top players for the Cup clash at the Nou Camp.

After withstanding a barrage of early Barca attacks, Malaga drew first blood in the 25th minute when Thiago Alcantara dithered just outside his penalty area. He was dispossessed by Manuel Iturra who slotted past the stranded Jose Manuel Pinto.

Barca's reaction was swift and another defensive lapse gifted them an equaliser three minutes later.

Lionel Messi, who showed off his four Fifa Ballon d'Or awards to the home fans before kickoff, robbed Weligton on the right and sped into the area before curling a low shot beyond Carlos Kameni.

Barca took the lead a minute later when captain Carles Puyol stooped to meet Alcantara's corner and sent a looping header over Kameni and in off a post.

Neither side created much danger in the second half but Malaga looked to be in serious trouble when Ignacio Monreal picked up a straight red card for felling Pedro when he was through on goal with 15 minutes left.

However, Barca failed to make their numerical advantage count and Ignacio Camacho was left unmarked at the far post to clip in a 90th-minute equaliser.

Coming at the end of one of the sloppiest Barca performances of the season, the goal gave Malaga hope for next week's return leg at their Rosaleda stadium on the south coast.

The La Liga leaders should have been out of sight but squandered a number of clear chances, with Chile forward Alexis Sanchez particularly wasteful.

DISAPPOINTING DEBUT

Barca sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta said the tie was "very balanced" after the first leg and praised Malaga for their fighting performance.

"We could have scored the odd goal more in the first half," the former Barca and Spain goalkeeper told television broadcaster Canal Plus.

"What we have to do now is go there with the goal of winning," he added.

Real are the likely opponents in the last four after Jose Mourinho's side beat Valencia 2-0 at the Bernabeu in the first leg on Tuesday.

New Sevilla coach Unai Emery, appointed this week to replace the sacked Michel, had a disappointing debut when the Andalusian club were held to a 0-0 draw at Real Zaragoza.

The winners of the quarterfinal tie will meet Atletico Madrid or Real Betis, who play their first leg at Atletico's Calderon stadium on Thursday, in the last four.



Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Other Live Streaming

Event Streaming

Channel Streaming

Sports Talk



Calvin Emeka Onwuka
The best team always wins the league
One of the ironies of life is that the first time I heard the chant of “boring, boring”, it was...

Emeka Enyadike
UCL predictions from supersport.com
Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Juventus go into the Champions League semifinals in good...

Segun Odegbami
Who will win the Champions League?
With only 4 teams now left in the Uefa Champions League I feel safe enough to take my pick of which...

Carol Radull
Why Chelsea must be congratulated
I am not a Chelsea supporter and in Kenya that means that I am supposed to criticise Chelsea every...

Dr Errol Sweeney
More controversy for FA Cup final ref
Not long after the appointment as this years’ FA Cup final ref was announced, the man at the heart...

Sunday Oliseh
Why Barcelona should be feared
It had all the indications of a season destined to be a disaster for Barcelona, when the season...