For the third consecutive season, we’re having a Copa Del Rey Clasico, as Barcelona and Real Madrid clash in the Spanish Cup semifinal. More important to who? It’s a Clasico, it’s always big, but with the La Liga title seemingly all sewn up and delivered to Barca, this one is much more important to Real it seems.
Barcelona won the last encounter between the two teams in the Copa Del Rey, taking place in the quarterfinals. The first match took place in Madrid. Cristiano Ronaldo gave the hosts a 1-0 lead in the 10th minute, but like in the league match at the Bernabeu that season, Barcelona turned things around in the second half with goals from Xavi and Eric Abidal. This was probably the most physical of the Clasico matches in recent years, with Lionel Messi taking more than one cheap shot from Pepe, Fabio Coentrao not to mention other scuffles between the players.
In the replay, Real Madrid did make it tough for Barcelona in the second half. Barca got a comfortable 2-0 lead at half time with two goals from Pedro and Dani Alves. In the second half, Real Madrid made a furious come back through Cristiano Ronaldo, who has a tendency to score at the Nou Camp, and Karim Benzema.
A year earlier, or even less than that, Jose Mourinho got his first win against Barcelona. The Copa Del Rey doesn’t mean that much on normal years, but in 2010-2011, after Barcelona beat Real Madrid in the Champions League semifinal, not to mention won the title with a 5-0 drubbing in Mourinho’s first Clasico, there was much more than just the Copa Del Rey at stake, and after winning the match, with a Cristiano Ronaldo extra time goal, it suddenly seemed to be much more significant than it usually is.
In all, the teams have played each other 30 times in the Copa Del Rey; Barcelona winning 14 matches, Real Madrid winning 10, and six more ending in draws. They’ve played in six finals; Barcelona winning three of them, the last of which in 1990 through goals by Guillermo Amor and Julio Salinas. Real won the first final between the teams in 1936.
When it comes to two leg meeting, Barcelona have a 6-5 edge in the 11 clashes between the teams. The first one in the 1916 semifinal was in a different format than it’s played today, with goal difference having no meaning. Barcelona won the first leg 2-1, Real Madrid won the second leg 4-1. A replay, decider, was played in Madrid, ending in a 6-6 extra time thriller. Another replay was played in Madrid, Real winning 4-2 after extra time.
Real Madrid’s biggest Cup win over Barcelona came in 1943, beating their rivals 11-1 in the second leg of the semifinal clash. Barcelona’s biggest win is 6-1 from the 1957 quarterfinals second leg, including four goals from Eulogio Martinez.