Keylor Navas calls on Real Madrid to make Copa del Rey advantage count

Posted Thursday, February 07, 2019 by PA

Keylor Navas calls on Real Madrid to make Copa del Rey advantage count

Keylor Navas hopes Real Madrid can make their away goal count to finish off Barcelona at the Bernabeu and reach the Copa del Rey final.

Los Blancos hold a slender advantage after they secured a 1-1 draw in the opening leg of their semi-final clash at the Nou Camp on Wednesday night.

Lucas Vazquez put Real in front after just six minutes before Malcolm rescued the hosts with his second-half equaliser.

Barcelona are bidding to win the competition for a fifth consecutive time, but goalkeeper Navas hopes Real can stop their run of domination when the two sides meet again on February 27.

“We knew we had to score and hopefully we can make the away goal count because we want to be in that final,” he told Real Madrid TV.

“Both sides created chances and we both enjoyed spells on top.”

Ahead of the return match, Navas added: “We expect a tough game. You can’t think it is going to be a walk in the park because both clubs want to be in that final.

“So, we have to try and do things better than they do to book our place there.”

Lionel Messi was introduced to the last-four match only as a second-half substitute after Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde started him on the bench.

The Argentinian was nursing a minor leg injury sustained in the 2-2 La Liga draw against Valencia last weekend.

“Leo is fine,” Valverde is quoted as saying by Marca. “We prefer not to take risks at this time of the season.

“He had some discomfort and we decided it was for the best.”

Malcolm, who deputised for Messi, impressed for the home side, netting Barcelona’s equaliser after 57 minutes.

But Valverde’s side must now score at least one goal at the Bernabeu to reach the final.

“We have to score, so the tie is open,” he added.


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