Copa del Rey holders Barcelona have been drawn against bitter rivals Real Madrid in a semi-final Clasico.
The Spanish giants will now face off against each other three times within a month, with both legs of their cup clash before their Liga meeting on 2nd March. The first leg will take place on 6th February at Camp Nou, with the second leg taking place on 27th February at the Santiago Bernabeu.
The last time they met, Barcelona thrashed Madrid 5-1 at home in October as Luis Suarez’s hat-trick secured a result that spelled the end of Julen Lopetegui’s short reign as head coach in the Spanish capital.
The two giants of Spanish football have held a monopoly over the Copa del Rey in recent years, winning eight of the last 10 editions between them.
Barcelona are going in search of their fifth successive domestic cup triumph.
While Santiago Solari’s side is already 10 points behind Barca in La Liga. The Copa del Rey offers Santiago Solari his most realisitc opportunity of domestic silverware. Therefore, his first two Clasico matches as Madrid manager are likely to hold extra significance.
The draw also sees Madrid faced with a daunting gauntlet of matches during the first two weeks of February across three competitions.
They face fifth-place Alaves in La Liga at Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday before their trip to Catalunya for the first leg of their Copa Clasico double-header.
Solari’s side then face local rivals Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metripolitano on 9th February before travelling to Amsterdam to face Ajax in the Champions League four days later. Then they will again play the second leg of the Copa semi final against Barcelona on 27th February.
These matches will be a real test of character for Solari’s men.
While Valencia and Real Betis are the other two teams who face off in the other semi-final of the Copa del Rey.
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