Barcelona vs Valencia Copa del Rey : Match report and analysis
Cameroonian teenager Wilfrid Kaptoum netted a late equaliser to give Barcelona a comfortable 1-1 draw at Valencia that wrapped up a final 8-1 aggregate success in their Barcelona vs Valencia Copa del Rey semi-final this Wednesday.
Barca, who went through to the sixth final in a total of eight seasons, will face Celta Vigo or Sevilla in the mere showpiece match.
“I’m very happy to play another final… It’s one of the nicest matches of the season,” Barca coach Luis Enrique exclaimed to reporters.
Alvaro Negredo put Valencia surprisingly in front in the 39th minute after Barca’s goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen had somehow parried his first effort but the ball just fell nicely back to the striker to tap it home in the Barcelona vs Valencia Copa del Rey match.
It was Valencia’s first goal in four games since Rodrigo scored in the second leg of their Cup quarter-final victory over Las Palmas on Jan. 28.
Kaptoum found the net just two minutes after coming on as a substitute at only eight minutes from time.
Luis Enrique rested nearly all of his first-choice players, making a crucial eight changes from the first leg in the forms of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Neymar, Javier Mascherano and Gerard Pique, all resultantly missing the game.
He commented depressingly on the lack of atmosphere in the almost half-empty Mestalla stadium.
“It was a bit strange due to the (7-0) result we brought here,” he said.
Neville, his eye on Saturday’s crucial La Liga match at home to Espanyol when he will sincerely be looking for a first win in 10 league games while being in charge, also rested a number of his first-choice players.
The former England defender will have been rather pleased, however, with his team’s overall attitude and commitment with many of the fans staying away or outside the ground yelling their disappointment and anger with their struggling home team.
“The positive thing from this game has been the performance of some of the younger players. I think that we deserved to win, and they played with dignity,” Neville said.