Atlético Madrid will play against Barcelona in the semi-final of the Copa del Rey, after the two teams were drawn against each other this afternoon.
The first leg will take place at the Vicente Calderón next Wednesday 1st February, with the return at the Camp Nou the following Tuesday 7th February.
Diego Simeone and Luis Enrique’s eyes will have lit up when Real Madrid were knocked out of the competition by Celta on Wednesday night, but only one of them will make it through to the final.
Celta, who knocked out Atleti at same stage season, take on Alavés in the other semi and will be favoured to make it through to the final.
However, Barcelona will now be the strong favourites to win the competition, especially given that the red and whites have to travel to Catalonia for the second leg.
They came past Real Sociedad in the quarter-final, having beaten Athletic Bilbao and Hércules in the previous rounds. Atleti on the other hand have overcome Guijuelo, Las Palmas and Eibar.
With both teams languishing a little in the league, compared to their high standards at least, the Copa will represent a realistic and attractive chance at some silverware this season.
Since Simeone took charge, Atleti have played three knock-out ties against Barça, winning in the Champions League in 2013-14 and 2015-16, but losing in the Copa del Rey in 2014-15.
Back in September, a goal from Ángel Correa earned a 1-1 draw at the Camp Nou, although Messi and co. won both league meetings last season.
We can expect a competitive tie between two of European football’s strongest and most contrasting sides.
Atlético vs. Barcelona
Celta vs. Alavés