Football

Barcelona, Real Madrid made to sweat against third-tier opponents

La Liga's heavyweights were both given a scare by third-tier opponents in the Copa del Rey yesterday morning (Singapore time), as Barcelona needed two late goals to beat UD Ibiza and Real Madrid dug deep for victory over Unionistas de Salamanca.

Barca sit 44 places ahead of Ibiza and Real 56 above Unionistas. But the lowly duo both came close to extraordinary upsets, only for Ibiza to lose 2-1 and Unionistas 3-1 in front of their jubilant home fans.

With Lionel Messi rested, Antoine Griezmann proved the saviour for Barcelona. He scored twice in the second half, including a 94th-minute winner, after Pep Caballe had given the hosts a fairy-tale lead at Can Misses.

Meanwhile, Real conceded an equaliser in the second half following a brilliant run and finish from Unionistas' Alvaro Romero, only to restore their advantage five minutes later.

Juan Gongora turned the ball into his own net after Gareth Bale opened the scoring. Brahim Diaz's injury-time goal rounded off the scoring. - AFP

Football