Guardiola and Mourinho look ahead to Barca - Madrid cup final

15:30, February 04, 2011      

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Wednesday's semifinals of the Spanish Copa del Rey knockout competition presented Spain with its first final between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid for 21 years.

Barcelona's 3-0 win in Almeria gave the Catalan side an 8-0 aggregate score over their rivals, while Real Madrid were made to work a lot harder by Sevilla before finally winning 2-0 on the night thanks to goals from Mesut Ozil and new arrival Emanuel Adebayor.

The cup final will be played on April 20 and the venue, which has still to be confirmed, will probably be Valencia's Mestalla Stadium.

Barcelona go into the game as favorites after beating Real Madrid 5-0 in the Camp Nou Stadium earlier this season and after having won the past five meetings between the two sides.

Pep Guardiola's side is playing much better football that Jose Mourinho's Madrid, which at times lacks rhythm and looks stale with players such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Angel Di Maria below their best after playing 10 games since the start of January.

Speaking in Thursday's Spanish sporting press, Guardiola highlighted the form of his players in the start of 2011.

"More than scoring goals, I am happy that my players are playing well. The big news is that we have reached the final and I am very satisfied by that," said Guardiola, isn't thinking about the big game for the moment.

"We now have a month and a half ahead of us to think about and prepare for the final," he commented.

Meanwhile Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho insisted that the chance of playing Barcelona in a single game with a major title at skate was not a chance to avenge their humiliating 5-0 defeat in the Camp Nou.

"We want to play a final and win it. History tells us that in this kind of game there are no favorites and that on many occasions it is the side that is least expected to win which wins the match," said Mourinho.

Their clash in the Cup final means Real Madrid and Barcelona could play each other four times in less than three weeks should they meet in either the quarter or semi-finals of the Champions League, but Mourinho reflected on the effort his side has had to make to reach its first final since 2003.

"It has been very hard to get to the final and we really deserve to be here after having played Sevilla and Atletico Madrid," said the Real Madrid coach.

Source: Xinhua
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