Barça avoid humiliation to become only Catalan team left in Copa del Rey
An added time Griezmann winner saves blaugrana blushes, while Badalona outdone in extra time by Granada
FC Barcelona are the only Catalan team left in the Copa del Rey after just about overcoming the challenge of third-tier Ibiza thanks to a 94th minute strike from summer signing Antoine Griezmann.
The blaugrana struggled to find rhythm with a team missing many of its regular faces, and only registered their first shot on goal in the 68th minute, suggesting the players and new manager Quique Setién will still need more time on the training ground to implement and perfect the new coach’s ideas.
Ibiza had taken an early lead, and had the ball in the net for a second time only to have their celebrations cut short for a foul on Clement Lenglet in the buildup to the disallowed goal.
Ultimately, the quality of the La Liga leaders shone through, despite Lionel Messi being left at home, as two goals from the French World Cup winner were enough to see Barça through to the next round.
There, it will be impossible to see a Catalan derby this year after the losses to Badalona, Girona, and Espanyol in the round of 32.
Espanyol, bottom of La Liga but with plenty of momentum behind them since the appointment of Abelardo Fernández as their third manager this season, lost 2-0 away to Real Sociedad.
Badalona, who remain in the relegation zone of their Segunda B group, defeated La Liga side Getafe in the previous round, but couldn’t repeat the trick against Granada.
Ultimately, the top tier team needed an extra 30 minutes at the end of full time in order to overcome the challenge of the Catalans, with the final score ending 1-3.
Second division Girona played host to Villarreal but left Cristhian Stuani off the team sheet, meaning they had to take on top division opposition without the help of their striker who boasts 18 goals in 20 league games so far this season. The visitors ran out 0-3 winners to secure their passage.
The draw for the round of 16 will take place on Friday, January 24.