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Copa del Rey

  • February 8, 2012
  • • 20:00
  • • Camp Nou, Barcelona
  • Referee: David Fernandez Borbalan
  • • Attendance: 90237
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FT
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Barcelona win Aggregate 3 - 1

Copa del Rey Preview: Barcelona - Valencia

The injury-hit Catalan outfit hold a slender advantage heading into Wednesday's semi-final second leg showdown with Unai Emery's side


PROBABLE LINEUPS

BARCELONA


Pinto
Alves, Pique, Puyol, Abidal
Xavi, Mascherano, Fabregas
Sanchez, Messi, Tello

VALENCIA


Alves
Miguel, Rami, Ruiz, Mathieu
Albelda, Banega
Piatti, Jonas, Alba
Soldado

Sergio Busquets is a major doubt for Barcelona's make-or-break clash with Valencia after he suffered a gash to his knee in Saturday's win over Real Sociedad.

The defensive midfielder's injury stretches an already long sick list at Camp Nou, with Andres Iniesta, Pedro and David Villa all sidelined.

Coach Pep Guardiola could retain Cristian Tello in attack after the youngster impressed against Sociedad, while Xavi Hernandez, Gerard Pique and Alexis Sanchez are all likely to be restored to the starting line-up after being rested in the weekend fixture.

Valencia coach Unai Emery looks set to recall Ever Banega and Jonas to starting XI after the midfield duo were rested for Sunday's goalless draw at Atletico Madrid.

Los Che need to score to have any chance of progressing to the final, as Carles Puyol's header in the 1-1 draw at the Mestalla last week gives the Catalans the advantage on the away goals rule.


DID YOU KNOW?
  • Barcelona are the most successful club in Copa del Rey history, having won it 25 times and finishing runners-up 10 times.
  • The Catalan giants haven't lost a competitive match at Camp Nou since September 2010.
  • With a seating capacity of just over 99,000, Barcelona's Camp Nou is the largest stadium in Europe.
  • Valencia have won just once in their last nine away games in all competitions.
  • Los Che haven't won at Barcelona for more than eight years, with their last victory coming in October 2003.
  • Roberto Soldado (pictured) is the Mestalla club's leading scorer this campaign with 20 goals.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
22Éric AbidalDefender
3PiquéDefender
5Carles PuyolDefender
23CuencaStriker
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
6Thiago AlcántaraMidfielder
6XaviMidfielder
9Alexis SánchezStriker
10MessiStriker
12Víctor ValdésGoalkeeper
21AdrianoDefender
15BartraDefender
22Daniel AlvesDefender
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
32Jonathan Dos SantosMidfielder
37TelloStriker
1Diego AlvesGoalkeeper
4Adil RamiDefender
24Jérémy MathieuDefender
18Jordi AlbaDefender
23Miguel BritoDefender
18Víctor RuizDefender
-AlbeldaMidfielder
-Ever BanegaMidfielder
8Sofiane FeghouliMidfielder
20Aritz Aduriz ZubeldiaStriker
7JonasStriker
30GuaitaGoalkeeper
2BrunoDefender
20Ricardo CostaDefender
24Tino CostaMidfielder
10ParejoMidfielder
44Juan BernatMidfielder
11Pablo PiattiStriker
Players to Watch
Messi
Messi
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 10
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
It's Barcelona. It's a big game. It's at Camp Nou. How many times has the Argentine maestro stepped up to the plate on occasions like these? Fatigued or not, the Catalan side will look to their No.10 for inspiration yet again to help fire them towards their third Copa final appearance in four years.
Roberto Soldado
Roberto Soldado
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 9
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Valencia's poor run of form in recent weeks has coincided with a sticky patch for the ex-Real Madrid striker, who has scored just once in his last four outings. Los Che will need a big performance from their leading scorer to overcome the odds and knock the World and European champions out of the Copa del Rey.
Prediction
After a series of sub-par displays in recent weeks that has seen them lose ground on Real Madrid in the league, Barcelona will be determined to make sure that they do not get beat here. The visitors are going through a poor run of results themselves, and it is difficult to see them turning it around at Camp Nou.
Editor's Prediction

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