NEWS
Wednesday December 3 2014
Barca stroll to Copa del Rey victory

Barca strolled to a 4-0 victory in their first-leg Copa del Rey tie at Huesca to leave the return game at the Camp Nou a mere formality.

Ivan Rakitic, Andres Iniesta, Pedro and Rafinha were all on the mark as Luis Enrique’s men enjoyed a comfortable evening against the minnows from the third tier of Spanish football.

Boss Enrique made numerous rotations to his starting XI from last weekend’s game at Valencia, only defender Jeremy Mathieu keeping his place, while the good news was that Andres Iniesta returned from injury after more than a month on the sidelines.

Marc-Andre ter Stegen took the gloves with Brazilian defender Douglas coming in at right-back alongside Marc Bartra, Mathieu and Adriano, with Iniesta joined in midfield by Ivan Rakitic and youngster Sergi Samper. Rafinha, Munir and Pedro made up a three-pronged attack.

Unsurprisingly, Huesca boss Luis Garcia Tevenet opted for a 4-2-3-1 formation to try and contain their more illustrious opponents on a heavy pitch at El Alcoraz.

The hosts began brightly and almost opened the scoring on 10 minutes when Ter-Stegen miskicked a clearance straight at Guillem, only for the ball to bounce clear. It was to prove costly as two minutes later Rakitic curled home a stunning free-kick from outside the box into the corner of the net.

It was the signal for Barca to turn on the style and the second goal was not long in coming, Iniesta driving home from the edge of the area on 16 minutes after being teed up by Rakitic.

Munir then had a decent chance, picking up a rebound only to see his left-foot shot blocked, before the Segunda B side almost equalised just after the half-hour mark when a cross from Camacho found Tyronne alone with just the goalkeeper to beat. However, his effort was superbly saved with his legs by Ter-Stegen to make up for his earlier error.

Three minutes later Rakitic, who was running the show, almost notched his second of the night only for his shot to strike the upright, but Pedro put Barca completely out of sight on 38 minutes when his powerful shot found the bottom corner to make it 3-0. Pedro nearly scored again on the stroke of half-time when his effort was deflected behind, with the minnows looking a demoralised side as the referee’s whistle sounded for the break.

After the restart Tyronne was unlucky with a curling effort that flashed just wide as the Aragonese outfit put up more of a fight, while Guillem had Ter-Stegen on the stretch on 58 minutes. At the other end, Munir had a series of half-chances he failed to convert but Barca did finally managed to increase their advantage after 71 minutes, Rafinha’s shot from the edge of the box taking a heavy deflection off Alex Garcia to leave ‘keeper Jimenez stranded.

Huesca had the opportunity to get a consolation goal 10 minutes from time when a poor pass from Douglas produced an almighty scramble in the Barca box, but the ball was eventually cleared behind for a corner.

Substitute Sosa had a great chance for the home side with two minutes left when he found room in the box but fired over with the goal at his mercy. Even so, it was too little too late as the Blaugrana eased to victory and ran out 4-0 winners, with Sergi Roberto having a goal disallowed in the final minute.

Huesca 0-4 Barcelona

Rakitic 12 (B), Iniesta 16 (B), Pedro 38 (B), Rafinha 71 (B)

Huesca: Jimenez; Aythami, Garcia, David, Morillas; Josan (Esnaider 74), Gassama (Sosa 56); Camacho, Inigo, Ros, Tyronne (Cabezas 61); Guillem

Huesca substitutes: Chueca, Cabezas, Esnaider, Sosa, Gaspar

Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Douglas, Bartra, Mathieu (Edgar le 63), Adriano; Samper, Rakitic (Sergi Roberto 63), Iniesta; Munir (Sandro 75), Pedro, Rafinha

Barcelona substitutes: Masip, Montoya, Sergi Roberto, Sandro, Edgar le

Referee: Del Cerro Grande

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