In an impressive comeback, Real Madrid clinched a resounding 4-0 victory over Barcelona at Camp Nou, thanks to Karim Benzema’s second-half hat-trick. The result overturned the 1-0 first-leg deficit, enabling Carlo Ancelotti’s team to advance to the Copa del Rey final.
Barcelona came into the game with confidence, having won three successive Clásicos, but Vinícius Jr. leveled the scoreline with a first-half stoppage-time goal, leaving both teams at a stalemate.
The second half witnessed Benzema taking center stage, putting up a remarkable performance to score three goals within thirty minutes, securing an unforgettable victory at the Camp Nou, Barcelona’s home ground. This feat was last achieved by Ferenc Puskás in 1963, and Ancelotti commended his team, describing the performance as “a complete match.”
Overall, Real Madrid put in an excellent display, demonstrating their technical and tactical prowess, and Benzema’s superb hat-trick was a testament to the team’s hard work and determination.
According to Reuters, Carlo Ancelotti stated that “If you don’t make it complete, you can’t win 0-4 here,” emphasizing the importance of playing a complete game to achieve a victory like the one Real Madrid secured over Barcelona. The first half of the match was challenging for the team, but the dynamics of the game shifted after Vinícius Jr.’s goal.
Ancelotti highlighted the significance of personality and experience in such games. Real Madrid blended the energy and enthusiasm of Rodrygo, Federico Valverde, and Eduardo Camavinga with the experience of Vinícius Jr., Luka Modric, and Toni Kroos to produce a spectacular game. The team’s mix of youth and experience proved to be a winning combination, enabling them to clinch a memorable victory over their arch-rivals.
For Barcelona, it was undeniably a humbling evening, given the team’s impressive performance throughout the season. Xavi, the team’s coach, has skillfully led them to a position where they are currently 12 points ahead of Los Blancos at the top of La Liga. With only 11 games remaining, Barcelona has all but secured its 27th league championship.
Despite this, the sound of displeasure could be heard from the home crowd following Real Madrid’s third and fourth goals, both of which were scored by Benzema. Xavi was left to rue his team’s underwhelming performance in the face of such a strong display by their rivals.
He spoke with enthusiasm, praising Real Madrid for their exceptional performance in the second half of the game. “I must extend my sincere congratulations to Real Madrid,” he said, “They displayed an outstanding performance in the latter half of the match.” He went on to say that when you exhibit kindness to Madrid, they don’t always reciprocate it.
As a Barcelona supporter, he acknowledged that it would be difficult for him and many of the team members to sleep that night, but he emphasized that they must shift their focus to the next game against Girona.
The path to securing their 20th Spanish Cup title for Real Madrid is obstructed by Osasuna, who triumphed over Athletic Bilbao by a score of 2-1 in the aggregate to earn their spot in the final for only the second time in their club’s history.