As Atletico Madrid and Barcelona prepare to face off in the Copa Del Rey quarter final, anticipation is rising amongst fans expecting to see another classic in a tie that has thrown some thrilling encounters in recent years. We look at the some of the most memorable matches the pair have shared in recent years.
1997: Barcelona 5 – 4 Atletico Madrid
The two sides shared one of the most memorable matches of the season when they met at the same stage of the Copa Del Rey. After sharing an enjoyable 2 – 2 draw in Madrid, Atletico seemed to be heading towards the next round thanks to a first half trick from Milinko Pantic. Ronaldo pulled two goals back soon after half time only for Pantic to add his fourth of the match to surely send Atletico through. However, Barcelona were to throw a spanner into the works. After Luis Figo reduced the deficit, Ronaldo added two goals to send the Nou Camp wild.
El Mundo Deportivo described the tie as “the most vibrant, emotional and spectacular match of recent years.”
1998: Atletico Madrid 5 – 2 Barcelona
Although Luis Van Gaal’s Barcelona had already been crowned La Liga Champions for the season, the vast majority of the crowd at the Vicente Calderón Stadium took great pleasure in righting the wrongs of the result in the Copa Del Rey from the previous season. Whilst the match was a high scoring affair, the game will mainly be remembered for Rivaldo’s the first goal, scored by Rivaldo. After picking up a loose ball just inside the Atletico half and spotting the opposition goalie off his line, the Brazilian struck a venomous shot over the goalie’s head into the back of the net. Barcelona won the battle, Atletico won the war.
2009: Atletico Madrid 4 – 3 Barcelona
In a tie that once again pitted Madrid’s wits against a Pep Guardiola led Barcelona team that were running away with the title, Madrid once again prevailed with a positive outcome in a fast paced match. Although Barcelona twice led through goals from Thierry Henry and Lionel Messi, goals from Diego Forlan and Sergio Aguero, including a stunning long range strike from the former gave Atletico all three points and continued Barcelona’s search for the title. Sid Lowe’s description of the match as a “fantastic, fun, breathless and brilliant” tie being appropriate to describe the affair.
2011: Barcelona 5 – 0 Atletico Madrid
The tie represents one of Pep Guardiola’s more memorable moments in his final season at the Nou Camp, as Barcelona lit up the stadium with a magical performance. Despite Atletico possessing the defensive and offensive talents of Diego Godin and Radamel Falcao respectively, the Madrid players were unable to contain the spellbinding performance of the Catalan side. Lionel Messi proved to be the stand out performer, wowing the both sets of fans with his unrivaled dribbling and finishing skills to finish the match with a hat trick. Messi’s striking partner, David Villa, also chipped in a goal of outstanding and noteworthy quality if his diminutive Argentine partner had not been on the pitch.
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