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F.C Barcelona 2-0 Sevilla FC, 2016 Copa del Rey: Match Review

A review of the 2016 Copa del Rey final between Europa League Champions Sevilla and La Liga Champions Barcelona.

Denis Doyle/Getty Images

There was a fantastic buzz around this tie even before a ball had been kicked. Both clubs had enjoyed a trophy success in the past week and were looking to complete a double. Barcelona had secured the league title on the final day last season while Sevilla overcame Liverpool to win a third straight Europa League.

Barcelona Sevilla
Possession 48% 52%
Total Shots 17 14
Shots on Target 10 2
Corners 12 11
Fouls 11 31
Offsides 4 3
Yellow Cards 4 7
Red Cards 1 2

Once the ball did get rolling, it was Sevilla who were making life difficult for Barça. They didn't allow the Catalans any time to settle and as a result, Barça's passing game was off. One pass that did come off was Andrés Iniesta's to Luis Suárez in the eighth minute. Just to the left of the penalty area, Iniesta chipped the ball over the defence into the path of his Uruguayan teammate. Suárez jumped to hit the volley but pulled it wide.

Both teams continued to battle with each other. A slick Calderon pitch allowed many strong challenges to come sliding in including a particular highlight from Adil Rami in what can only be described as a diving head slide tackle.

However it was another challenge that defined the first half. A ball over the top allowed Kevin Gameiro to run in behind and it was left to Javier Maschernao to chase him. It was a race Mascherano was never going to win so he elected to drag him down before he reached the box. The referee showed no hesitation in showing Mascherano a deserved red card and the pendulum swung in Sevilla's favour. The followup free kick was a good effort from Éver Banega that required a hand from Marc-André ter Stegen.

Barcelona survived until half time and Luis Enrique looked to counter the dismissal by replacing Ivan Rakitić with Jérémy Mathieu. But Sevilla kept coming at Barcelona and within five minutes of the restart the ball had cannoned off the post. Banega again had an effort that took the slightest but pivotal touch from Gerard Piqué to take it onto the post.

The night continued to get worse for Barcelona in the 54th as Lionel Messi looked to be injured. A chipped ball from Suárez had created an awkward chance for Messi that led to a strong collision to his left temple. The Argentine recovered but it was actually Suárez who would be forced off. His chip had overextended his hamstring and it was evident early on that he wouldn't be able to continue. Suárez was replaced by Rafinha as Barcelona switched back to a three man midfield.

Despite the game descending further into a scrappy affair, Sevilla were unable to take advantage of their numerical superiority. With extra time on the mind they introduced the pace of Yevhen Konoplyanka to get at Piqué and Mathieu.

That extra period was steadily approaching but there was time for the playing field to be levelled again. In an almost carbon copy of Mascherano's sending off, Banega met the same fate. The midfielder dropped deep to pick up Neymar but inadvertently played him onside. With Neymar getting away from him, Banega slid and got nothing off the ball. The red card was immediately shown and worse for Sevilla was the free kick was in Messi range. In an effort more about precision than pace, Messi got it on target but it was tipped over fairly comfortably.

The full time whistle went at 0-0 and both teams of ten men headed into extra time. Like most games involving Barcelona, it was a high tempo affair so when the extra time kicked off there were some visually tired legs from both teams. One man who didn't appear tired though was Jordi Alba. In the 97th minute, Messi picked the ball up in central midfield. With one of the passes of the season he lifted the ball up and across into the path of the charging Alba. With a finish that Suárez would've been proud of, Alba simply stroked the ball across the keeper and into the far corner. It was jubilation for the full back who had just scored his first goal of the season and a probable cup winner.

The Sevilla players looked exhausted. The more they pushed up, the more they risked a counterattack from Messi and Neymar. One of these counterattacks should've been converted as Neymar breaked with four players around him. He hesitated until the last minute before giving it to Iniesta but the defender closed down the club captain quickly.

With 110 minutes played it showed the physical exhaustion of some of the players as the game had to stop for the referee to receive treatment. Pointing to his right leg he signalled it was cramp and after some quick treatment, he was fit to continue.

The tired legs was accompanied with tired minds and that was shown with Daniel Carriço late tackle on Messi. He got some of the ball but a lot of Messi and the referee decided to show him the second yellow card.

Finally, deep into added time onto the extra time, Neymar got the goal that killed the game. Again, it was Messi as the architect. Jinking his run then sliding it to Neymar. The Brazilian tucked the ball away and won the cup for Barcelona.

Sevilla would've been disappointed not to capitalise on their man advantage but Barça hung in before delivering two killer blows.

Roll Call Info
Total comments 711
Total commenters 51
Commenter list Anders Thomassen, Anthony_Stark, AraibKarim, Ashraf Arefin, AzBlaug, BDBarca, Barca_24, Black&Gold.Forever, Daxterflames, ER_21, FZBoy, JC14, JogoBonito, JordanBelfort, KiwiBarca, MayteeA, My Name Is Dennis, Neyssi, PG9, Ruy Diaz, SOCCERMYFAV123, SUMYTH90, ShantanuC, Som-i-Serem, Steven Cordero, Swn.Culé, TimmyC105, Trifitology, UnderConstructionCule, YeaWell, abhi3pie, akash verma, alimomoney, asherdgreat1, avyator, craig00000, footballfordoze, godnkls, henderick.mitchell, istiaque, knorkinator, magnithor, michael.olivier, mickael2, mightyobie, navjot4664, semperty, somunequip, syredeathtrooper, vireyda, whopaysneymar
Story URLs
# Commenter # Comments
1 JordanBelfort 99
2 syredeathtrooper 67
3 Som-i-Serem 64
4 FZBoy 40
5 mightyobie 39
6 Trifitology 31
7 navjot4664 31
8 JC14 29
9 AzBlaug 28
10 abhi3pie 28
11 istiaque 26
12 AraibKarim 23
13 avyator 22
14 Ashraf Arefin 20
15 BDBarca 17
16 Daxterflames 16
17 TimmyC105 14
18 KiwiBarca 13
19 UnderConstructionCule 11
20 henderick.mitchell 10
21 akash verma 8
22 whopaysneymar 7
23 knorkinator 7
24 somunequip 6
26 semperty 4
27 asherdgreat1 4
28 craig00000 4
29 Neyssi 4
30 alimomoney 3
31 Ruy Diaz 3
32 godnkls 3
33 PG9 2
34 footballfordoze 2
35 MayteeA 2
36 My Name Is Dennis 2
37 JogoBonito 2
38 ShantanuC 2
39 vireyda 1
40 YeaWell 1
41 michael.olivier 1
42 Black&Gold.Forever 1
43 mickael2 1
44 ER_21 1
45 Anthony_Stark 1
46 Swn.Culé 1
47 Barca_24 1
48 magnithor 1
49 Steven Cordero 1
50 SUMYTH90 1
51 Anders Thomassen 1
# Recs Commenter Comment Link
5 Som-i-Serem Finally a Yellow for Sevilla.
2 navjot4664 Arda adds a beard.
1 Som-i-Serem And Iniesta and Finals - a Better Love story than the best love story.
1 Som-i-Serem Pique is deservedly getting all the adulation.
1 AzBlaug I hope no Barcelona players shake the referee's hands at the end of the game.
1 JordanBelfort that was a clear order from above
1 navjot4664 I talk logical shit when I'm high, and I find this offensive.
1 syredeathtrooper Alba finishing like Suarez
1 syredeathtrooper I am so, so, so, so proud of these boys. The hunger, intensity, tenacity they showed.
1 mightyobie Messi and Iniesta were pure footballing magic while players like Pique, Mats and Mathieu fought with heart till the end.
1 henderick.mitchell How the fuck can you not be proud of what our boys did this season? SHOW SOME LOVE GUYS! They did it!
1 AraibKarim Messi MOTM.
1 FZBoy Sky Sports commentator "Ref thinks he's Luis Suarez"
1 navjot4664 Do refs have subs? :credit_card:
1 vireyda [no title]
1 istiaque that was brave grandpa
1 craig00000 That is a really disappointing red
1 navjot4664 Because realism isn't your cup of tea?
1 Som-i-Serem What a save from MaTS!
1 Som-i-Serem And the Neymar - Alba link-up is probably been at it's poorest.
1 syredeathtrooper Very tactical game
1 JordanBelfort this ref is a fucking bastard. i saw it from the first minute that he and his people will make this game difficult for us
1 Daxterflames Are you actually kidding me you REF?
1 avyator Pique is a motherfucking monster, he and MATS have kept the team alive
1 AraibKarim Mathieu. SALUTE !
1 AraibKarim 2nd*
1 Trifitology Why are we bitching about the refs???
1 Som-i-Serem That was Brilliant from Iniesta.

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