Barcelona seized control of their King’s Cup quarter-final tie against Atletico Madrid when Lionel Messi followed up his saved penalty to score and secure a 1-0 first-leg victory at the Nou Camp on Wednesday.
Barca dominated possession against the La Liga champions but Atletico defended stoutly and held the record Cup winners at bay until Juanfran fouled Spain team mate Sergio Busquets in the area six minutes from time.
Messi’s effort from the spot was well saved by Atletico goalkeeper Jan Oblak, but the ball fell kindly for the Argentina captain and he tapped it into the net to give Barca the advantage ahead of next Wednesday’s return in Madrid.
“It’s a good result but the second leg is still to come and they are going to be 90 very intense minutes,” Barca captain Andres Iniesta said in an interview with Spanish television broadcaster Canal Plus.
“We performed extremely well against an opponent which is very tough to overcome,” added the Spain international.
“Not conceding a goal is an important achievement but it does not guarantee anything. We will try to do things well again in the return.”