Losing 0-1 at Bilbao because the goal in injury time made Barca stop in the quarterfinals, the King’s Cup of Spain on 6/2.
Athletic Bilbao 1-0 Barcelona
Due to the lack of two injured strikers Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele, coach Quique Setien pushed Sergi Roberto to kick the striker right. Lionel Messi took responsibility for putting pressure in the middle of the attack, while Ansu Fati kicked left. But due to various reasons, from form to experience, this arrangement is not very effective.
The only chance for Barca in the first half was the finishing phase of Fati. The home team made an emergency escape when the ball hit defender Unai Nunez.
Bilbao has more chances than Barca in the first 45 minutes. They nearly took the lead with an unrecognized goal due to Williams’ offside, as well as a narrow effort from Dani Garcia.
Instead of having many goals, the King’s Cup quarter-final impressed the impact. The referee had to draw nine yellow cards, including six for Barca. Messi was also shown a yellow card for a foul on Raul Garcia after 39 minutes.
Barca gave Antoine Griezmann a replacement for Fati after 57 minutes, but the situation was not much better either. Messi missed an opportunity when he was unable to beat goalkeeper Unai Simon after Arthur’s tuck. Griezmann also got a shot from Simon.
By playing hard and strong spirit, Bilbao succeeded in maintaining the score 0-0 to compensate time. And when the referee prepared for extra time, the home team surprised by Williams’s decisive goal. After a cross from the right wing of Ibai Gomez, Williams gently touched the head to the ball drifted into the far corner to beat goalkeeper Ter Stegen.
The goal lost at the end of the match made Barca unable to get up. They were defeated and had for the first time not reached the King’s Cup final in seven seasons.
Meanwhile, with Granada, Sociedad and second division Mirandes, Bilbao entered the semi-finals. Previously, Granada won Valencia 2-1, Mirandes defeated Villarreal 4-2 and Sociedad suddenly won 4-3 right at the Bernabeu of Real Madrid.