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Copa del Rey

  • 30 January 2014
  • • 02:30
  • • Camp Nou, Barcelona
  • Referee: Alberto Undiano Mallenco
  • • Attendance: 25551
5
FT
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Barcelona win Aggregate 9 - 2

Barcelona 5-1 Levante (agg. 9-2): Alexis double sees Catalans stroll into semis

Barcelona 5-1 Levante (agg. 9-2): Alexis double sees Catalans stroll into semis

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The hosts responded to going down in the Copa del Rey last-eight clash by thrashing the visitors at Camp Nou, with Carles Puyol, Adriano and Cesc Fabregas also netting

Barcelona recovered from going behind early on to stroll past Levante 5-1 to qualify for the last four of the Copa del Rey 9-2 on aggregate.

Loukas Vyntra nodded on to the back Sergi Roberto to hand the visitors a shock lead at Camp Nou, but les Granotes were the inferior side throughout and Adriano levelled on the night with a sweetly-hit curler from 25 yards out.

Barca skipper Carles Puyol scored his first goal of the season on the brink of half-time to restore order in Catalunya before Alexis Sanchez tapped in twice immediately after the break as the visitors crumbled.

The hosts entered cruise control as Levante put on a brave face, with Cesc Fabregas - one of the top performers on the night - adding a fifth before being substituted late in the game.

The Catalans will face either Real Sociedad or Racing Santander in the Copa del Rey semi-finals, with a final against either Real Madrid or Atletico Madrid the reward of further qualification.

Gerardo Martino opted to drop Lionel Messi to the bench to give the Argentine a rest from first-team action, with a 4-1 win in the first leg having put the Blaugrana in considerable control of the quarter-final tie.

Despite facing a mammoth task, Levante unexpectedly grabbed a foothold in the tie in the pouring rain at Camp Nou after nine minutes.

Vyntra shook off marker Marc Bartra to rise highest following the visitors' first corner of the match and his header careered off Sergi Roberto's back and past a motionless Jose Pinto.

An almost empty Camp Nou was momentarily muted, but some relentless attacks soon after paid off when, on 28 minutes, Adriano took a touch outside the area before curling nicely inside Javi Jimenez's right post.

Joaquin Caparros' side showed little ability to retaliate and were punished with a second goal with half-time two minutes away. Cristian Tello - who scored a hat-trick in the first leg - swept a pinpoint corner on to Puyol's head, whose nodded effort skimmed into the back of the net.

Martino's attackers showed no desire of letting Levante off with a one-goal defeat. With 50 minutes gone, Tello played a precise ball through to the on-rushing Martin Montoya, whose acutely-angled strike was feebly saved by Jimenez. Alexis, reacting faster than the Granotes' defence, sneaked behind the goalkeeper to tap in.

Two minutes later, Alexis scored a second straightforward goal, getting to the ball before Jimenez after Adriano's shot deflected off Vyntra and on to the crossbar.

Pedro Rios should have grabbed a second-half consolation goal but spooned a simple effort over the crossbar from 10 yards, summing up the disappointment of the travelling Levante faithful.

Fabregas added insult to injury before being brought off, cutting on to his left foot inside the area and sliding his shot past a helpless Jimenez, and the Catalans eased off the gas as they approached the inevitable finish line.

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