Our prediction for this Copa del Rey match:
There will be fireworks when Athletic Club and Barcelona face each other in the Copa del Rey final at Estadio de La Cartuja. The Lions were beaten by Real Sociedad in the 2019/20 Spanish Cup final, and they face yet another uphill task in Sunday’s showdown. Athletic Bilbao do not seem to be at the top of their game, and given their six-match winless run, home win should not be considered. All Peru Nolaskoain, Yuri Berchiche, Yeray Alvarez, and Oier Zarraga are likely to miss the game with injuries.
Barca, on the other hand, suffered a heart-breaking 2-1 loss to Real Madrid in El Clasico at the weekend, but they are surely capable of beating Athletic Club on neutral location. The Catalan giants aim to save the season by clinching the Copa del Rey title, and seeing that Ronald Koeman can count on key players for the Athletic Bilbao clash, away win should be considered.
Highlighted Player (Iker Muniain):
Iker Muniain was once considered one of the most talented players in Spain, but he obviously failed to reach his full potential. Munian is an attacking midfielder, who is capable of playing as a forward as well and he began his youth career at Chantrea. In 2005 he made probably the best decision of his career as he joined Athletic Bilbao youth academy.
He made his debut for Athletic Bilbao on 30 July, 2009 in a 1-0 loss to Young Boys in the Europa League. Iker Munian impressed in the 2011/2012 La Liga campaign with the Lions, scoring nine goals in all competitions, but he failed to make a bigger progress. The Athletic Bilbao product has been struggling with injuries and it has to be noted that the injury he suffered against Sevilla on 4 April, 2015 could have ruined his career.
However, he returned to action on 20 December, but he was playing below expectations in the second half of the season. Iker Munian made his Spain debut on 29 February, 2012 in a friendly against Venezuela. La Roja won the match 5-0 and Munian came as a substitute in the 74th minute of the match.
Highlighted Team (Barcelona):
Barcelona is a Spanish football club based in Barcelona, Catalonia. Barca were founded in 1899 and they are regarded as one of the greatest clubs in world football. The Catalan giants won their 24th La Liga title in 2016, with Luis Suarez winning “El Pichichi” award. Barcelona have won five European Cup trophies and a number of top-class players were part of the team in the past.
The likes of Hristo Stoichkov, Romario, Rivaldo, Ronaldinho, Ronaldo, Johan Cruyff, Diego Maradona and Pep Guardiola are some of many players that played for Barca in the past, but, no doubt, Leo Messi has established himself as the club’s trademark. Barcelona welcome their rivals at Camp Nou, the stadium that was built in 1957.
Barcelona’s local rivals are Espanyol, but the rivalry between Barca and Real Madrid is much bigger. The two La Liga giants face each other in “El Clasico”, which is considered one of the most exciting derbies in the world football. Barca are famous for their football youth school La Masia as well.