COPA DEL REY: Sevilla Stun Title-Holders Barca 2-0
Sevilla produced a brilliant second half display to beat FC Barcelona 2-0 in their Copa del Rey quarter-final first leg match on Wednesday.
The result left the title-holders with an uphill task to reach the last four.
After an even first 45 minutes, strikes from Pablo Sarabia and Wissam Ben Yedder stunned the Catalans.
The goals left them needing a second leg comeback at the Nou Camp for the second consecutive round in the competition.
Barca, who earlier in the day announced the signing of Frenkie de Jong from Ajax Amsterdam, handed a debut to loan signing Kevin-Prince Boateng.
Yet it was Sevilla — spurred on by a raucous home crowd — who looked the more threatening throughout.
The Andalusian side were incensed when a Video Assistant Referee (VAR) review deemed Barca’s Arturo Vidal had not handled Ever Banega’s cross after half an hour.
Replays indicated the ball had struck the upper part of the Chilean’s arm but the home side kept pushing and it was all Sevilla after the break, and Pablo Machin’s side took a deserved lead just before the hour through Sarabia.
French forward Ben Yedder then doubled their lead from close range with quarter of an hour to go.
He celebrated by lifting his shirt to reveal the message “For my brother Sala”.
It was in reference to Argentine striker Emiliano Sala, who is currently missing after the plane he was travelling on disappeared over the English Channel.
The second leg takes place next Wednesday.
Espanyol take on Real Betis and Real Madrid host Girona on Thursday in the remaining quarter-final first legs, after Getafe defeated Valencia 1-0 on Tuesday.
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