Barcelona, Madrid play in Copa del Rey

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 13, 2014 at 3:19 am •  Published: January 13, 2014
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MADRID (AP) — The Copa del Rey is one the schedule this week in Spain with Barcelona and Real Madrid closing in on the quarterfinals following opening victories.

Defending champion Atletico Madrid holds an away-goals advantage over Valencia, while lower-tier clubs Alcorcon and Racing Santander look to reach the quarterfinals.

Here are five things to know going into the second leg of the round of 16:

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NO REST

Atletico will need to avoid a dip in intensity when it hosts Valencia following a tense, scoreless draw against Barcelona on Saturday that maintained its place as co-leader of the Spanish league at the midway point of the season.

Valencia is looking to raise its game at the Vicente Calderon on Tuesday after following up the 1-1 first leg result with a 2-1 league loss to Celta Vigo.

"Any team that is looking to make a mark always to be playing to the limit," Valencia coach Juan Pizzi said. "Intensity is the most basic thing in football."

Valencia midfielder Ever Banega is expected to return from an ankle sprain while fullback Jeremy Mathieu looks to be sidelined.

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BAD MEMORIES

Barcelona does not have fond cup memories of Getafe's Coliseum Alfonso Perez Stadium.

The Catalan club secured a 5-2 first-leg victory in the 2006-07 semifinals, marked by one of Lionel Messi's most memorable goals when the Argentina forward slalomed through Getafe's team like Diego Maradona did in scoring against England in the 1986 World Cup.

But Barcelona was humiliated 4-0 in the return at Getafe to miss out on the final.

This time around, Barcelona holds a 4-0 advantage with Messi and Neymar back in the squad and fully healthy, although Andres Iniesta may be rested after picking up a knock against Atletico on Saturday.



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