Barcelona eye double triumph over Real Madrid but defensive doubts remain

Barcelona eye double triumph over Real Madrid but defensive doubts remain

Barcelona eye double triumph over Real Madrid but defensive doubts remain

"We're coming through this phase of games - which was really tough [away against Lyon, Sevilla and Madrid twice] - really well".

Los Blancos were far the better side in the first half as they dominated possession and creating a few chances than their opponents. We don't know if it was Carvajal or Suarez who, involuntarily, injured his knee during the second goal. This sealed a 4-1 aggregate success in the semi-finals for the Blaugrana.

But, Raphael Varane diverted the ball into his own net with the hopes of deflecting the ball away for a corner.

"I don't think there are many players capable of scoring three times against Madrid twice in the same season", he said, as quoted by AS.

He was left on the bench again in Wednesday's 3-0 Copa del Rey loss at home to Barcelona.

Madrid hasn't made it to the Copa final since it won its last title in 2014 against Barcelona.

The result extends Real's winless run against Barcelona to five matches in all competitions.

This year's other finalist will be decided on Thursday, when Valencia hosts Real Betis after a 2-2 draw in the first leg in Seville.

However, the big defender and his teammates at Real Madrid will quickly put the defeat behind, with Saturday's La Liga clash against Barca offering the Galaticos another chance to return to winning ways.

Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde warned his team that Real would be out to regain some pride in the wake of Wednesday's defeat. It would leave the Champions League as the only competition in which it can still succeed in its first season without Cristiano Ronaldo in almost a decade.

Madrid blog Managing Madrid said the Brazilian's game "did take a turn for the worse" in the second half, pointing out that he was guilty for conceding the penalty. He failed to get a shot off in a one-on-one situation, then missed over the crossbar from close range.

Midfielder Isco is available after recovering from a back injury, but the Spain global is yet to start a league game since Solari's appointment as boss in November.

The 26-year-old has still not started a league game since Santiago Solari was promoted to become the replacement for Julen Lopetegui, who coached Isco while in charge of Spain. It was once again a counter attack as the Uruguyuan Luis Suarez was brought down by Casemiro in the penalty box.

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