Barcelona were held to a 1-1 draw by Real Madrid at the Camp Nou in the first leg encounter of the Copa del Rey semi-finals. A goal by Malcolm cancelled out one scored by Lucas Vazquez in the 6th minute to salvage a draw for the Catalans.
Barcelona were without their talisman, Lionel Messi who was only fit to start from the bench having suffered a knock in the 2-2 draw with Valencia. The Catalans needed to prove a point and show that they could play without the presence of Messi, an attribute that has lacked all season.
Real Madrid took the lead in the sixth minute with only their second shot of the night. Brilliant Lucas Vazquez twisted his body to fire past Marc-Andre Ter Stergen after receiving a drilled cross from French striker, Karim Benzema.
For the hosts, it was Malcolm who had the chance but the youngster just shot straight into the hands of Keylor Navas. He must be scratching his head for missing that but the offside flag came to the rescue and saved his blushes.
The home side grew increasingly frustrated after being unable to create any clear-cut chances. In the heat of that, Luis Suarez lost saw his shot saved by Madrid goalie after some good footwork from Malcolm.
However, few minutes into the second half with the clock on 57 minutes, Malcolm got the goal. He took the rebound beautifully well after Sergio Ramos cleared a Suarez ball off the line.
Solari’s men must have been gutted by that. They must have thought that the win was for the taking but the Blaugranas had other plans.
Valverde wasted no time in introducing Lionel Messi to watch the Argentine do his magic, so did Solari think too when he introduced Gareth Bale.
Nevertheless, it was always going to be a cagey one and a 1-1 draw was a fair scoreline.
Barcelona 1-1 Real Madrid it ended.