Barcelona produce stunning extra-time comeback to reach Copa del Rey final
Copa del Rey semi-final second leg, Camp Nou - Barcelona 3 (Dembele 12', Pique 90', Braithwaite 95') Sevilla 0 Barcelona win 3-2 on aggregate.
Barcelona players celebrate their third goal scored by Barcelona's Danish forward Martin Braithwaite during Spanish Copa del Rey (King's Cup) semi-final second leg football match between FC Barcelona and Sevilla FC at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on
Barcelona pulled off a remarkable turnaround, overturning a 2-0 first leg deficit to beat Sevilla 3-2 on aggregate and secure their place in the Copa del Rey final.
Ronald Koeman’s side had work to do after losing at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan last month, but kept going as Gerard Pique scored a late equaliser in the final minute of stoppage time and Martin Braithwaite netted the winner in extra time.
It took Barcelona just 12 minutes to gain a foothold in the contest through an opener, with Dembele lashing an astonishing strike from distance into the top corner giving Tomas Vaclik no chance.
Ousmane Dembele of FC Barcelona celebrates 1-0 with Sergio Busquets of FC Barcelona, Clement Lenglet of FC Barcelona, Oscar Mingueza of FC Barcelona, Frenkie de Jong of FC Barcelona, Pedri of FC Barcelona, Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona, Gerard Pique of FC
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Antoine Griezmann was introduced off the bench as the home team looked for a second goal, but it was Sevilla who were presented with a golden opportunity to essentially secure their place in the final, but Lucas Ocampos had a penalty kick saved by Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Barca piled forward in an attempt to send the tie into extra time and found the goal they needed in the final minute of stoppage time when Pique glanced home a header from a Griezmann delivery.
Fernando was sent off in a further blow to Sevilla before Braithwaite got on the end of a Jordi Alba cross to score what proved to be the winner, squeezing his header under Vaclik. The visitors finished the match with nine men, with Luu de Jong sent off as Barca progressed to the final where they will face either Athletic Club or Levante.
TALKING POINT - Sevilla only have themselves to blame for second leg collapse
While Barcelona deserve great praise for the way they managed to dig deep to pull this aggregate win off, Sevilla allowed this semi final to slip through their fingers. Ocampos could have killed the tie from the penalty spot, but saw his tame effort saved. Then there was the red card shown to Fernando right at the end of 90 minutes which handed the advantage to Barca for extra time. This was after Diego Carlos had kept a ball in play with Sevilla leading 1-0 when he should have wasted a few more seconds by allowing it out for a throw-in. From this, Barca scored their equaliser. Sevilla will reflect on a lot of mistakes here.
Marc Andre ter Stegen of FC Barcelona stops penalty of Lucas Ocampos of Sevilla FC during the Spanish Copa del Rey match between FC Barcelona v Sevilla at the Camp Nou on March 3, 2021 in Barcelona Spain
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MAN OF THE MATCH - Gerard Pique (Barcelona)
There were a number of standout performers for Barcelona, including Dembele, Oscar Mingueza and Jordi Alba, but it was Pique’s fighting spirit that got the Catalans over the line. It was his goal in the final minute of stoppage time that sent the match to extra time and gave Barca a chance of making the Copa del Rey final. Even after that, Pique hobbled through injury to keep things tight at the back. He embodied the character that saw Barcelona pull off one of their best comebacks for years.
Gerard Pique of FC Barcelona celebrates with his team mates after scoring their side's second goal during the Copa del Rey Semi Final Second Leg match between FC Barcelona and Sevilla at Camp Nou on March 03, 2021 in Barcelona, Spain.
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Barcelona - ter Stegen 8, Mingueza 8, Pique 9, Lenglet 6, Dest 7, de Jong 7, Busquets 6, Pedri 7, Alba 8, Dembele 8, Messi 7. Subs - Griezmann 7, Trincao 5, Braithwaite 7, Ilaix 7, Firpo 5.
Sevilla - Vaclik 6, Vidal 5, Kounde 6, Carlos 5, Acuna 7, Fernando 3, Jordan 5, Torres 5, Suso 4, En-Nesyri 4, de Jong 3. Subs - Rekik 4, Ocampos 3, Navas 4, Rakitic 4, Papu Gomez 4, Munir 4.
12’ GOAL! Barcelona 1-0 Sevilla: What a rocket from Dembele! The Frenchman lets rip from over 20 yards out and finds the top corner of the Sevilla net! What a strike and Barcelona well and truly have a foothold in this Copa del Rey semi final!
34’ Cleared off the line! Inches away from being a second Barcelona goal! Messi dribbled his way through the Sevilla defence with the ball spinning towards goal, but Acuna makes the clearance!
68’ Off the crossbar! That would have been a stunning goal from Alba! Dembele played a deep cross to the back post, Alba met it on the full scissor-kick volley, but it comes off the woodwork!
74’ PENALTY KICK SAVED! Ter Stegen guesses the right way and makes the diving save from Ocampos! There is still life in Barcelona! They are still in this Copa del Rey semi final!
90+3’ GOAL! Barcelona 3-0 Sevilla: A late, late equaliser in this tie! In the very final minute of stoppage time! Griezmann rescued a cross and delivered his own ball and Pique was up from the back to glance home a header! Barca are still in this!
90+3’ SENT OFF! Fernando has been sent off and Sevilla are down to 10 men as we are about to enter extra time!
95’ GOAL! Barcelona 3-0 Sevilla: Braithwaite gets on the end of the delivery from Alba and his header squeezes underneath Vaclik! Barcelona have completed the turnaround and now have the lead in this Copa del Rey semi final for the first time!
105’ ANOTHER RED CARD! And now de Jong has been sent off and Sevilla will play the second half of extra time with just nine men! This tie is surely as good as over!
Gerard Pique has now scored 49 goals in all competitions for Barcelona and 20 of them have been headers.
Ousmane Dembele has now scored in consecutive games for Barcelona for the first time this season.