SPANISH FOOTBALL action with two 2º leg SPANISH CUP ( Copa del Rey ) quarter-finals clashes tonight with the following final results & scorers.


REAL MALLORCA hosted ATHLETIC CLUB BILBAO with a 0 - 2 deficit from the 1º leg encounter. The home team was vibed up to attempt to turn around the result but failed to do so as the "Basque" Club defended well & played it cool to keep their advantage. In fact Bilbao added to the aggregate when Mallorca player RAMIS scored an own goal in the 76th min to put Bilbao ahead. The blow broke the "spirits" at bit of the home team as Bilbao got themselves in the the semi-finals. The possible negative consequence of the Bilbao victory was the injury to young Muniain & a red card to Susaeta in the 90th min Final result: 0 - 1

FC Barcelona

Finally we witnessed a "Clasico" in correct Football conditions. FC BARCELONA drew 2 - 2   ( 4-3 agg) REAL MADRID , but the latter was just a goal away from going into the semi-finals. In my opinion Real Madrid lost the quater-final, firstly by not putting the attitude seen tonight at the "Santiago Bernabeu" in the 1º leg, & secondly the 6-8 missed opportunities tonight in the first half that would have given then this q/final phase.

HIGUAIN missed in the first 10 seconds an opportunity that no one can explain, then the some player missed two more sitters & OZIL, the "Best man" for Real Madrid , then hit the bar from an outside shot. These missed opportunities also saw the saves from Barça goalie Pinto that kept Real out in the first half.

But you cannot knock around Barça & not finish the job, & they - the difference with Madrid - did take their chances & scored via PEDRO in the 43rd min ( a Messi set up) & in the 47th min from a DANI ALVES drive into the corner of the goal. Two clear chances , two goals, while Real Madrid had 10 clear goal ocassions & zero goals. 

The second half was pure Football, top World class level as Barcelona started strong but lost fizz as time went on. Mourinho took off Higuain for Benzema & Kaka for Callejon & Real found air again. In the 67th min Ozil found CRISTIANO RONALDO with a precise pass & the latter scored. Then in the 71st min Coentrao found BENZEMA who took out Puyol & fired home the second. Real Madrid "smelled blood" & went for the third that would have given them the semi - final birth & they had Barça floored as the chances came & the opportunities were again missed. Barcelona managed to hold on & took the tie pushed to the limits, very lucky to have gone off the field alive. In other words, a real scare for Barça tonight.

The end sees Barcelona into the semis, but with a feeling that Real Madrid had deserved more the victory. The controversy was served all game with a terrible performance from the referee that missed clear penalties ( both sides ) , gave an unjust red card in the 88th min to Sergio Ramos & some doubtful off-sides. In fact, the Real Madrid team feels - perhaps wrongly or rightly - that the referee influenced ( robbed them) the result again & depending from which side of the fence you watched the match, some may have been right.

The Barcelona victory had a high cost with the injury to Iniesta with a torn hamstring muscle & Alexis with a shoulder complaint. For Real Madrid , Pepe played & put in a more "concentrated" & excellent performance.

In conclusion, congratulations to Barcelona,  & to Real Madrid for lifting up to the occasion & giving us all the best Football in the World.

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