Player ratings as Blaugrana miss two extra-time penalties win Copa del Rey
Barcelona needed extra time from Ousmane Dembele and Martin Braithwaite to defeat third-place opponents Cornella on Thursday night as Ronald Koeman’s side progressed to the knockout stages of the Copa del Rey.
Barca were uninspired in the absence of Lionel Messi and, despite their possession majority, struggled to find a way to get past an organized defense from Cornella. The odds were actually split evenly for the most part, with both teams seeing effort on goal saved.
A Miralem Pjanic penalty was saved fantastically by Cornella goalkeeper Ramon Juan to keep the game scoreless at the break, before further kicking calamities occurred ten minutes before full time.
Clement Lenglet won the penalty, but Dembele’s dismal effort was easily stopped by Juan. Cornella’s shooting goalscorer produced more heroism to the death by dramatically preventing a Pjanic strike from nestling in the top corner, taking the game into overtime.
However, seconds after forcing another excellent save from Juan, Dembele found the top corner with an astonishing strike from outside the area. There was just enough time at the end for Albert Estelles to be sent off for the hosts before Pedri put Braithwaite on to score into an empty net with the last kick of the game.
Now, alongside Barcelona.
Neto (GK) – 8/10 – Made a good claw in the early stages and was used more in the second 45. I made some remarkable saves after the hour to keep the opponent at bay.
Oscar Mingueza (RB) – 6/10 – The Spaniard looked at danger as he rose to the right, scoring several promising crosses, while holding his own when Cornella made a breakthrough. A solid display.
Ronald Araujo (CB) – 9/10 – Another stoic performance from the Uruguayan. It was no frills throughout, making a series of crucial blocks, tackles and clearances. More and more looking like a real talent.
Clément Lenglet (CB) – 7/10 – A consistent exit for the French, rarely giving the opponent a passage in front of him and once again well distributed the ball from the heart of the defense.
Junior Firpo (LB) – 5/10 – Provided constant overlap for Antoine Griezmann on the left, but failed to deliver much quality and looked sloppy in possession at times.
Ilaix Moriba (CM) – 6/10 – The 18-year-old made his first appearance for Barca and looked at ease. Bié is playing well and brought Mingueza into the game well on the right flank. A good start, even if he looked leggy before coming off.
Miralem Pjanic (CM) – 6/10 – Distributed play well from midfield and provided good delivery when he had the chance. I could have won the match in 90 minutes but for a fantastic save. However, the fact that he missed the first half penalty limits him to six.
Riqui Puig (CM) – 5/10 – The youngster did not do justice to a rare starting opportunity. Despite shining moments on the ball, he couldn’t seem to find the right pass before coming back to halftime.
Trincao (RW) – 6/10 – It was unfortunate not to score on the half hour with a good volley and looked good until half-time. Unfortunately, the Portuguese weren’t able to influence the game as much after moving onto the pitch in the second half.
Martin Braithwaite (ST) – 6/10 – Again he didn’t receive too many serves but missed a golden chance early in the second period. Managed to score a goal with the last kick of the match – a nice end to the proceedings.
Antoine Griezmann (LW) – 6/10 – The Frenchman has been in fantastic form lately, but has really struggled to influence the game as he drifted wide. A little silent before being replaced.
Ousmane Dembele (RW) – 7/10 – A pathetic penalty would have monopolized his individual titles before redeeming himself with love at first sight of a strike that broke the deadlock in overtime.
Pedri (CM) – 7/10 – A few bright touches on the ball and rocked the team when Cornella’s tired legs gave him time on the ball. Was disinterested at the end of dragging Braithwaite as he was one-on-one with Juan.
Sergio Busquets (CM) – 7/10 – He broke the game well with his experience and Cornella barely came out of his own half after the veteran arrived – tells you everything you need to know, right?
Konrad de la Fuente (LW) – 6/10 – Forced a brilliant save from Juan with his first touches on the pitch and looked awkward on the left wing.