- Neymar hits double before the break
- Gabi sent off at half time
- Mario Suarez dismissed late on
- Barca to meet Villarreal or Getafe
Barcelona overcame nine-man Atletico Madrid in a fiery Copa del Rey quarter-final to seal a 4-2 aggregate victory.
Trailing 1-0 from the first leg, Fernando Torres drove Atletico level inside a minute but Neymar quickly swept home a Barca counter-attack.
Atletico led again through Raul Garcia’s penalty but Miranda’s own goal and a second for Neymar left the hosts needing three to progress at the break.
Gabi was sent off in the tunnel at half time and Mario Suarez saw red late on.
Their dismissals were in keeping with an ill-disciplined Atletico performance and when Neymar argued with home players on his way to the tunnel at the interval, he drew a cursory point of the finger from Gabi, who did not return for the second half.
Arda Turan threw his boot in a bizarre moment of anger
as the game slipped away from his side and the home side’s hope had been extinguished by the time Suarez collected a second yellow card for a foul on Lionel Messi.
It was Barca’s third and decisive goal on the night which seemed to ignite tempers as Jordi Alba created a tap-in for Neymar, seconds after appearing to handle a goalbound Antoine Griezmann shot inside the area.
From that moment, petty fouls underlined Diego Simeone’s side’s frustration as Barca eased to a last-four meeting against either Getafe or Villarreal, who lead 1-0 from the first leg.
The angry end to the night was in stark contrast to the beginning, when Torres pulled down a long ball, flummoxed former Liverpool team-mate Javier Mascherano and drove in off the post inside a minute.
Torres’s three rapid strikes
Fernando Torres scored 46 seconds into the first half against Real Madrid, 35 seconds into second half of the same game and 46 seconds into Atletico’s defeat against Barca.
It was the striker’s third goal since his return to his boyhood club but Barca looked imperious on the break and when Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar combined, the Brazilian swept a classy leveller across the keeper from 12 yards.
Garcia’s penalty – earned when Mascherano appeared to foul Juanfran outside the box – rekindled home hope but Miranda hooked a Sergio Busquets glancing header into his own net to dampen spirits.
The breakaway goal, started by Alba’s controversial block, then arrived but little should be taken away from the Barca left-back who ran the length of the field to collect Messi’s pass and deliver a cross for Neymar to finish a blistering counter.
Luis Enrique’s side are now one tie away from a fifth Copa del Rey final in seven seasons.
- 13 Oblak
- 20 Juanfran (Gámez – 58′ )
- 23 Miranda
- 24 Giménez de Vargas Booked
- 03 Siqueira Booked
- 08 Raúl García Booked
- 14 Gabi Dismissed after an earlier booking
- 04 Suárez Dismissed after an earlier booking
- 10 Turan Booked (Gracia Calmache – 63′ Booked )
- 19 Torres Booked
- 07 Griezmann (Ñíguez – 45′ )
- 01 Moyá Rumbo
- 09 Mandzukic
- 11 Jiménez
- 17 Ñíguez
- 18 Gámez
- 22 Gracia Calmache
- 28 Hernández
- 01 ter Stegen
- 22 Dani Alves Booked
- 03 Piqué
- 14 Mascherano Booked (Mathieu – 62′ )
- 18 Alba
- 04 Rakitic (Alcántara do Nascimento – 70′ )
- 05 Busquets
- 08 Iniesta
- 10 Messi Booked
- 09 Suárez
- 11 Neymar (Pedro – 77′ )
- 06 Xavi
- 07 Pedro
- 12 Alcántara do Nascimento
- 15 Bartra
- 21 Adriano
- 24 Mathieu
- 25 Masip
Ref: Jesús Gil Manzano