Match Analysis: Barcelona 1-3 Real Madrid (2-4 on aggregate)

Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho on December 4, 2012
© AP Photos
Sports Mole dissects the action as Real Madrid advance to the final of the Copa del Rey with a 3-1 win over Barcelona in the second leg of their semi-final clash.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice in the Camp Nou on Tuesday as Real Madrid advanced to the final of the Copa del Rey with a 3-1 win over Barcelona.

It was Madrid that opened the scoring as Gerard Pique felled Ronaldo in the penalty area, allowing the Portuguese to thump home from the spot.

Barcelona improved in the second period, but Ronaldo struck once more to move Madrid into a 3-1 lead on aggregate. It was 3-0 on the evening after 68 minutes, however, when Raphael Varane thumped a header into the back of the net.

Jordi Alba handed Barcelona a late consolation, but it was a case of too little too late as the Catalan outfit exited the competition.

Here Sports Mole dissects the 90 minutes of action between the two sides.

Match statistics:

Shots: 16
On target: 3
Possession: 62%
Corners: 7
Fouls: 8

Real Madrid:
Shots: 14
On target: 8
Possession: 38%
Corners: 3
Fouls: 13

Was the result fair?

Real Madrid without question deserved to advance to the final of the competition this evening. From the very first moment their passing was sharper, while they were more dangerous in the final third. The home side registered just one shot on target in the first period, as they failed to convert their domination of the ball into clear chances. Madrid are now unbeaten in their five competitive matches with Barcelona.

Barcelona's performance

It is a little premature for talk of a crisis, but Barcelona seem to have suffered a dip in form at the worst possible part of the season. They already face an uphill task to turn it around in the Champions League against AC Milan, leaving the La Liga title, which they have all but won, as their only silverware. Lionel Messi was certainly outshone by Ronaldo this evening.

Real Madrid's performance

Where has this Madrid team been? On this form, they are the best side in Spain. The match developed as expected, with Barcelona enjoying the possession but Madrid threatening on the counter. The capital outfit were just devastating in full flow, with Barcelona just unable to cope with their pace and movement. Watching Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson may have a sleepless night this evening.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Cristiano Ronaldo: Angel di Maria and Varane are worth a mention in this category, but it just has to be Ronaldo. The Portuguese stole the show with two goals in the Camp Nou, while his movement and overall play was of the very highest order.

Biggest gaffe

Barcelona's lack of pace in defence was cruelly exposed this evening. With Di Maria and Ronaldo in full flow and Xabi Alonso picking the passes, Pique and Carlos Puyol simply could not cope. The ever-elusive Xavi was also way off the pace this evening.

Referee performance

El Clasico is just about the toughest match to referee in world football. Under the circumstances, Alberto Undiano must receive praise. He rightly awarded Real Madrid a penalty in the first period, while he turned down three claims from the home side. The Spaniard was also not prepared to bow under pressure from the home supporters.

What next?

Barcelona: The Catalan outfit will attempt to return to winning ways against Madrid when they welcome Jose Mourinho's side in the league on Saturday.

Real Madrid: The league title might be gone, but Madrid will hope to inflict further misery on Barcelona when they travel to the Camp Nou at the weekend.

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring against Sevilla on February 9, 2013
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