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  HOME | Sports (Click here for more)

Real Betis Cruises Past Racing to Reach Copa del Rey Last 16

SEVILLE, Spain – Real Betis faced little opposition from third-tier club Racing Santander in Thursday’s second leg of their Copa del Rey round of 32 clash, winning 4-0 to wrap up a routine 5-0 victory on aggregate.

Betis head coach Quique Setien made some adjustments for the match at Benito Villamarin Stadium in Seville, placing Francis Guerrero on the left side of midfield instead of on the right, a spot that instead was occupied by Cristian Tello.

He also inserted Cameroonian midfielder Wilfrid Kaptoum and Japanese winger Takashi Inui into his starting 11.

The moves paid off as Betis was much more convincing in the second leg than in a 1-0 victory over Racing at El Sardinero Stadium in Santander on Nov. 1.

The opening goal came on a corner-kick play in the 32nd minute, when Racing forward Jon Ander Perez Ruiz de Garibay inadvertently poked the ball into his own net after Betis’ Antonio Sanabria had headed the ball toward teammate Antonio Barragan.

Goalkeeper Joel Robles then made two solid plays to thwart chances by Jon Ander and preserve Betis’ 2-0 lead on aggregate heading into the intermission.

Sanabria scored the Seville club’s second goal of the night when he converted a penalty try in the 59th minute after Racing’s Aitor Buñuel had fouled Moroccan defender Zouhair Feddal in the area.

Betis then completed the rout with goals by a pair of second-half substitutes: Sergio Leon in the 69th minute and Argentine midfielder Giovani Lo Celso just before second-half stoppage time.

Leon scored on a header off a corner kick, while Lo Celso executed a double cutback to maneuver around a defender before powering a left-footed shot into the upper-right part of the goal in the 89th minute.

With the victory over Racing, Betis has advanced to the round of 16 of the Copa del Rey for the first time since the 2015-2016 season.

The Seville club has won Spain’s annual knockout cup competition on two occasions – in 1976-1977 and 2004-2005.

 

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