Thursday 1 Feb

Barcelona vs Valencia - Match Preview

30 Jan 2018 Ed Mackey SPAIN: Copa del Rey
SPAIN: Copa del Rey

FC Barcelona

  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W


20:30 GMT
01 February 2018

Valencia CF

  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • L

20:30 GMT 01 February 2018

It’s getting towards that stage of the season where trophies start to get given out. In Spain, the first trophy that is on offer is the Copa del Rey and with just four teams left, it is time for the semi-final. One of the two semis will be played out between Barcelona and Valencia, the first leg takes place on Thursday evening at Camp Nou before the two sides will return to Mestalla next week for the second leg.


  • Barcelona are in imperious form this season and are the only unbeaten side left in Europe’s top five leagues. Since their two Super Cup losses before the start of the domestic campaign, the Catalan Giants have lost just once in all competitions. This came in the first leg of the Copa del Rey quarter-final against Espanyol but they duly despatched their local rivals in the second leg, winning 2-0 to progress into this round.
  • Valencia are having a decent season and they sit 3rd in La Liga with just Barca and Atletico above them. They booked their place in this semi-final after beating Alaves on penalties in the last round, both legs finished 2-1. This cup run may have distracted them from their league commitments as they have lost both of their last two league matches, against Las Palmas and Real Madrid.
  • Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi were the heroes for Barca in the last round as they scored the goals that won them the game against Espanyol. Both forwards will be looking to extend their great partnership on Thursday as they are the first pair to both score in five consecutive games at Nou Camp.
  • Valencia needed three goals and penalties to get past Alaves, Gonçalo Guedes, Rodrigo and Santi Mina were the goal scorers for The Oranges in the quarter-finals.


Valencia have been outclassed by Barcelona in their head-to-head over the years and have beaten them just twice in the last 24 attempts in all competitions! The last time these sides met in the Copa del Rey was just two years ago at the same stage and Barcelona absolutely obliterated Valencia after beating them 7-0 in their home leg. Suarez scored four and Messi scored a hat-trick that evening. Thursday’s visitors will be hoping to take some confidence from the last time they knocked Barca out of this competition in 2008. Juan Mata scored two in their 4-3 aggregate victory.


Barcelona must take advantage of the home first leg and take a comfortable lead into next week’s reverse fixture. Sergio Busquets is a doubt as to whether he will feature while Thomas Vermaelen and Ousmane Dembele aren’t quite ready to return to action.

Latest matches: FC Barcelona

28.01.2018 LaLi FC Barcelona CD Alaves 2:1 W
25.01.2018 Copa FC Barcelona Espanyol Barcelona 2:0 W
21.01.2018 LaLi Betis Sevilla FC Barcelona 0:5 W
17.01.2018 Copa Espanyol Barcelona FC Barcelona 1:0 L
14.01.2018 LaLi Real Sociedad FC Barcelona 2:4 W


Avoiding defeat is a very tough task for Valencia but if they can do that, they will be in a very good position to progress to the final. Three of their players have returned to training this week: Gabriel, Jeison Murillo and Javier Jimenez but Gonçalo Guedes is a major doubt.

Latest matches: Valencia CF

27.01.2018 LaLi Valencia CF Real Madrid 1:4 L
24.01.2018 Copa CD Alaves Valencia CF 4:4 D
20.01.2018 LaLi Las Palmas UD Valencia CF 2:1 L
17.01.2018 Copa Valencia CF CD Alaves 2:1 W
13.01.2018 LaLi Deportivo La Coruna Valencia CF 1:2 W


Barcelona have a big chance to complete an incredible treble this season with their participation in La Liga and the Champions League as well as this Copa del Rey run. This is the first piece of silverware of all three that they can get their hands on but they will need a good first leg result to give themselves the best opportunity to progress. They are certainly favourites to do that against a weaker Valencia side. Barca are expected to put this tie beyond doubt in the first leg as they are playing extremely well at the moment. Valencia will need to defend well and hope they can hit the hosts on the counter-attack.

About the author - Ed Mackey

Experienced sports writer and huge Leicester City fan.

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