Real Betis have been enjoying their finest season in many years, lifting the Copa del Rey and qualifying for the Europa League via their league position too. On the whole, it’s an experienced squad at Manuel Pellegrini’s disposal, which has helped them through some tough moments on the way to that success.
At 31, Marc Bartra has made it into the category of players that have seen it all. Coming through at La Masia, Bartra began playing for the first team under Pep Guardiola and was at Barcelona for their second historic treble in 2015 too. Before arriving at Betis, he also won a DFB Pokal with Borussia Dortmund.
Asked to rank the Copa del Rey success with Betis by Mundo Deportivo, Bartra had little doubt about where to put it in his pantheon of trophy wins.
“I have had the fortune of winning everything you can at club level, with Barca and with Dortmund, but winning with Betis, the feeling that it had, what we experienced during that weekend and even now, in the streets, the people, the happiness it gives them… It has made it very, very special. Even more so than any other title.”
Part of the reason for that was the historical factor. This was just Betis’ third Copa del Rey in their history and surely afforded more value in Seville than in Barcelona.
“The Beticos hadn’t won anything for 17 years, some didn’t even know what it was like to lift a Copa… Being a part of this family, this team that has made history is very big.”