The failures of Madrid in Alcoy and Atlético in Cornellá should have served as an example, but Barça is still determined to slide over rough waters.
Yesterday he came out of Vallecas with flying colors, where he had to come back from a game that had really gone wrong with a goal from
The usual complications of a team that falters at the slightest eventuality, but which has players of the stature of
Frenkie de Jong
With a couple of strokes of both, the Copa del Rey continues to be a dish of taste for Barça.
[Narration and statistics (1-2)]
It was a match with countless visiting occasions.
Before the quarter of an hour,
took a glove down on a side ball from Messi that pointed to goal.
In another arrival from
, a ball spat out by De Jong slid over the crossbar.
All the symptoms pointed to the imminence of the 1-0.
The voluntary absences of
had devalued the quality of Rayo, but not his dedication at all.
With four pieces behind and some occasional jolt in the high pressure,
was gaining weight with the advance of the clock.
Of course, due to the dominance of Neto, he could not boast of much more than
and the set piece.
So high up the line were those of the strip, that Barça began to bet on the ball to space to the detriment of driving.
Breaking with unchecked, behind the centrals, taking advantage of some slip like the one that left Trincao face to face with Dimitrievski, who was quickly rebuilt.
The rejection fell for
and the slowness of his break already deserved the goal by itself, although for sheer carom, the ball stumbled on the wood.
There Rayo had the deserved flying goal of the break.
Neither the early warning to
nor the expulsion of his ill-tempered physiotherapist had daunted him.
Cuadra Fernández was
able to punish as a penalty a shove by Fran García on
, perhaps the Barça monologue deserved a minimal reward, perhaps everything would be cleared up later ... The only certainty is that the Ray seemed blessed by the gods.
The ball, without a doubt, had become infatuated with the touch of wood.
Even after leaving Messi's sacred left boot.
That direct free kick from '10', from a corner, was the definitive confirmation: Barça was going to need something more than watermarks.
, obsessed in the protests to the referee.
The technician's nerves were the prelude to doom.
When things start to get muddy, don't trust guys like Junior Firpo too much.
His mistake in the withdrawal, before the career of the newly admitted
, triggered the 1-0 earthquake.
After the drowning of a week ago in Cornellá, the Cup was getting angry again for the Catalans.
Koeman immediately refreshed the attack, with
coin in the air
In reality, what the match was asking for was a finisher like
Or any striker with a pinch more instinct than the downcast Griezmann.
Because the rhythm with the ball, the depth and the arrivals from the second row were more than enough.
De Jong seemed to take care of all this, whose filtered pass to Griezmann was enough for Messi's draw.
The deployment of the Dutchman, beneficiary of that eternal association between Leo and Alba, was not going to stop there.
In a jiffy, the Lightning was on the canvas.
According to the criteria of The Trust Project
Copa del Rey
Copa del ReyEl Rayo, before receiving Messi: defaults, old jerseys and footballers returning by Metro
Copa del ReyThe wall of Ramón could not support the dream of Cornellà against Barça
LaLigaSimón opens the doors of San Mamés to a heavenly Messi
See links of interest
2021 business calendar
Seville - Valencia CF
Burnley - Aston Villa
Chelsea - Wolverhampton Wanderers
Brighton and Hove Albion - Fulham
Rayo - Barcelona, live