Cup kings Barca and Bilbao reach final
Barcelona and Athletic Bilbao the two most successful clubs in Spanish Cup history will meet in the final of this season's competition after both successfully survived their semi-finals.
Barcelona, who have 24 cup wins to their name, were held to a 1-1 draw in Majorca by Mallorca but progressed 3-1 on aggregate. The result though means Barcelona are now winless in four successive matches in all competitions, having seen their league lead whittled right down by bitter rivals Real Madrid.
Indeed Barcelona, who last won the cup in 1998, could have been in real trouble had not their reserve goalkeeper Jose Manuel Pinto saved a penalty in the 52nd minute in an incident which saw their defender Martin Caceres sent-off. However, they settled once Mallorca's Josemi was also red carded in the 70th minute and 11 minutes later they wrapped up their place in the final when Lionel Messi netted.
Athletic Bilbao confirmed their place in the first half of their second leg match with Sevilla as they scored three times to run out 3-0 winners on the night and 4-2 on aggregate. Bilbao have won the cup 23 times, with the last occasion in 1984 when they beat Barcelona. The final is in Valencia on 13 May.