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Copa del Rey

  • January 12, 2012
  • • 4:00 PM
  • • Estadio El Sadar, Pamplona (Iruñea)
  • Referee: Carlos Velasco Carballo
  • • Attendance: 12498

Barcelona win Aggregate 6 - 1

Osasuna 1-2 Barcelona (1-6 Agg): Alexis Sanchez and Sergi Roberto secure progression and set up Real Madrid tie in quarterfinals of Copa del Rey

Pep Guardiola's men started slowly and had to come from behind with two second-half goals to secure a comfortable aggregate victory over the Navarrans.

Barcelona went through the motions of its second-leg tie to secure a comfortable 6-1 aggregate victory over Osasuna at the Reyno de Navarra in the fifth round of the Copa del Rey.

After a lackluster start from the European champions, they came from behind to take a 2-1 win and secure a quarterfinal tie with reigning champions Real Madrid.

The hosts took a first-half lead lead against a disinterested Blaugrana through Dejan Lekic but Guardiola’s men responded with a vastly improved second-half display. Alexis Sanchez leveled the score moments after the restart before Sergio Roberto secured the win with a 72nd minute strike.

Barcelona began the game at a slow, workmanlike tempo as it sought a no-fuss 90 minutes. Osasuna gradually eked its way into the game after Pedro’s 6th minute shot was tipped over by Asier Riesgo.

Eric Abidal replaced the injured Andreu Fontas in the Blaugrana defense and almost gifted the opposition a goal in the 17th minute. Alvaro Cejudo dispossessed the Frenchman and his cross was met by Lekic. The striker’s effort got the beating of Jose Pinto but was cleared off the line by the covering Gerard Pique. Patxi Punal then failed to capitalize on the rebound.

Barcelona lacked urgency and rarely threatened the opposition. With eight minutes of the first half left, Lekic caught Javier Calleja’s pinpoint cross on the volley with sublime technique, but his effort shaded the outside of the post.

Moments after Riesgo produced a fantastic reactionary save to deny Pique, Osasuna came up with the perfect response. Raoul Loe outmuscled Sergio Roberto 25 yards from goal and the Lekic took full advantage of picking up the loose ball, lashing a left-footed strike from the edge of the box past Pinto.

Calleja and Cejudo both missed chances to enhance upon Osasuna’s lead before the break and they were punished with just four minutes of the second half played. Adriano dropped a shoulder, beating Marc Bertran and creating space for a low, drilled cross. It zipped off the surface, beating the sprawling Riesgo on its way to Sanchez at the back post who nodded in to level the scores.

After that goal the life and urgency was sucked out of the game. Sergio Roberto’s poor first touch spurned a potential one-on-one opportunity and Lolo failed to test Pinto with a free kick in the 64th minute.

Roberto did not make the same mistake at the second time of asking in the 72nd minute. Lionel Messi spotted the 19-year-old’s darting run in the area and poked an inch-perfect pass through to the youngster. His first touch narrowed the angle but he sent the ball across goal, beating Riesgo and finding the far corner.

Osasuna will now turn its attention to building on its impressive start to its La Liga campaign at home to Racing Santander this weekend. Barcelona’s victory sets up a tantalizing quarterfinal tie with arch rival and reigning champion Real Madrid. The first leg will take place on Jan. 17 at the Santiago Bernebeu.