'We have to swallow poison' - Sevilla crushed after dramatic extra-time defeat to Barcelona

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Sevilla Barcelona Julen Lopetegui 2020-21
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Gerard Pique's stoppage-time equaliser and Martin Braithwaite's extra-time winner capped a remarkable turnaround for the Blaugrana

Sevilla were left feeling devastated for their fans after being stunned by a second defeat to Barcelona in a week, the latest loss preventing them from appearing in the Copa del Rey final.

Julen Lopetegui's side were moments away from advancing on Wednesday night before goals from Gerard Pique, and an extra-time winner from Martin Braithwaite, sent the Catalans through.

Lucas Ocampos had earlier missed a penalty that could have prevented the late drama, with Lopetegui and midfielder Joan Jordan admitting the defeat is tough to take.

What happened?

Sevilla were two goals up heading into their Copa del Rey semi-final second-leg clash against Barca, with Jules Kounde and former Blaugrana star Ivan Rakitic having both scored in the first leg to give Lopetegui's men a solid advantage.

However, in a dramatic return meeting at Camp Nou, the Catalans went ahead through Ousmane Dembele's 12th-minute strike and would score two further goals to book their place in the final, where they will face either Athletic Club or Levante.

It could have all been very different for Sevilla, with the visitors missing a penalty as Ocampos squandered the chance to put his side 3-1 ahead in the tie with just over 15 minutes of normal time remaining.

As it turned out, Pique would go on to score in the 94th minute to force extra-time, with Braithwaite adding Barca's third of the night to send Barca through to the final. The evening would end on a further sour note for the visitors, as both Fernando and Luuk de Jong were sent off.

What's been said?

"We experienced the most crushing feeling in football conceding with the last kick of the game," Lopetegui told reporters. "We have seen the bitter side of football, to be deprived of a final, for which we have worked hard to try to get to, in the last play of the game. We have to swallow poison."

Jordan added: "We are really hurt. We feel so bad for all of our fans. We could have won it with the penalty."

What comes next for Sevilla?

Sevilla's primary aim will be to finish in top four of La Liga and secure their place in next season's Champions League.

Lopetegui's side are six points ahead of fifth-placed Real Sociedad and with a game in hand, although they remain 10 points away from top of the table Atletico Madrid.

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Beyond trying to finish in the top four of La Liga, Sevilla remain in contention to reach the Champions League quarter-finals although they have plenty of work to do.

The Andalusians are 3-2 down from the first leg of their last-16 tie with Borussia Dortmund.

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