Messi strikes to give Barca Cup edge against Atletico

Barcelona seized control of their King’s Cup quarter-final tie against Atletico Madrid when Lionel Messi followed up his saved penalty to score and secure a 1-0 first-leg victory at the Nou Camp on Wednesday.  

AFP| Last Updated: Jan 22, 2015, 05:26 AM IST

Barcelona: Barcelona seized control of their King’s Cup quarter-final tie against Atletico Madrid when Lionel Messi followed up his saved penalty to score and secure a 1-0 first-leg victory at the Nou Camp on Wednesday.

Barca dominated possession against the La Liga champions but Atletico defended stoutly and held the record Cup winners at bay until Juanfran fouled Sergio Busquets in the area six minutes from time.

Messi`s strike from the spot was well saved by Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak, but the ball fell kindly for the Argentina captain and he tapped it into the net to give Barca the advantage ahead of next week`s return leg in Madrid.

Villarreal or Getafe await in the last four and Villarreal gained the upper hand in their tie when captain Bruno Soriano, who had come off the bench half an hour earlier, curled in a free kick in the 85th minute at the Madrigal.

On the other side of the draw, Athletic Bilbao ground out a 0-0 stalemate at Malaga, while Sevilla play their first leg at Espanyol on Thursday.