Mar 02, 2023 Views 83
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Real Madrid vs FC Barcelona will be battling it out in the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu in a bid to secure a place in 2022/23 Copa del Rey final. Neither team made it to the final in 2022, with Real Madrid's absence from the showpiece tie stretching back to 2014. However, this season, at least one of the two El Clasico giants will advance to the final stage of the competition. The managers of both teams, Carlo Ancelotti and Xavi are trying to balance their busy schedules as they approach the end of the season. Real Madrid's experience will be tested against Barcelona's youthful promise, with both teams missing key players due to injury.
The winners of this semifinal tie over two legs will secure a spot in the final, and both sides have strong home records across all competitions this season. Barcelona have lost only one home game, while Real Madrid have remained unbeaten at home since the final weeks of last season. Fans in the UK can catch the game via BT Sport's TV and streaming services, while ESPN+ subscribers in the USA can stream the match in both English and Spanish. Ancelotti will be without defensive duo David Alaba and Ferland Mendy for this match, with Brazilian international Rodrygo only fit enough for a place on the bench.
Xavi's injury list continues to grow, with Robert Lewandowski, Pedri, and Ousmane Demebele all sidelined. However, Ansu Fati has been passed fit to rejoin the squad. The confirmed starting lineups for both teams have been announced, with Real Madrid's 11 consisting of Courtois (GK), Carvajal, Militao, Rudiger, Nacho, Modric, Camavinga, Kroos, Valverde, Benzema, and Vinicius Jr. Meanwhile, Barcelona's 11 features Ter Stegen (GK), Kounde, Araujo, Alonso, Balde, Kessie, Busquets, de Jong, Raphinha, Torres, and Gavi. Ancelotti will be relying on Nacho Fernandez to cover for the joint absence of Alaba and Mendy, while Xavihas had to make changes to his entire defence due to the recent loss to Almeria in La Liga action. Raphinha's return to full fitness will provide a replacement for Lewandowski, with Ferran Torres moving into a central position.