Wednesday, May 25

Athletic and Real challenge each other in the first Cup final with a referee

  • The two greats of the Basque Country chase this Saturday a title that they have not raised since the 80s

  • The ‘lions’ eliminated Barça in the quarterfinals, while the donostiarras left Madrid out in the same round

  • “Hopefully the day will come when a female referee stops making the news,” says Guadalupe Porras, from Extremadura.

Never before in the history It has happened and who knows if it will happen again. For the first time, Athletic and Real, the two greats of the basque football, are measured in the final of the Copa del Rey, an exciting duel that will exalt some and ruin others. Is he match of their lives, those kinds of dates where maybe there are something more to lose than gain, but that nobody wants to lose. Unfortunately it will be no audience. Both clubs preferred to wait for the pandemic, but time ran out and the 2020 Cup champion will be known on April 3, 2021, which will go down in the annals of Basque football.

Three days after hosting the match between Spain and Kosovo, the La Cartuja stadium will host a pulse with a tremendous symbolic value. History shows that it takes horrors to get to this point. And much more to raise the trophy. Real Sociedad have not won a title for 34 years, precisely the 1987 Cup won against the Athletic on penalties in Zaragoza. A year later it would fall to him Barça (1-0) in a new final. The two-time league champion golden generation converged on that team (Arconada, Gorriz, Zamora…) with booming values ​​like Bakero and Beguiristain. The people of Donostia would not go that far again until this edition.

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The 84 brawl

Athletic still hasn’t lifted their favorite title for longer. Since 1984, in that mythical final against Barça (1-0) that ended in a brawl with Maradona, Migueli and Clos against Goikoetxea, Sarabia and De Andrés as main combatants. The lions returned to the final in 1985, 2009, 2012 and 2015, but always tails. If they lose to Real they will have a new opportunity in two weeks against the team of Ronald Koemanbut nobody wants to think about it. If you have to choose, all Bilbaoans have it clear.

“We are a fighter club, warrior, who competes with villagers. That’s ours Competitive DNA. It has been so long since the last Cup that I was not even born. We are going to go all out because since childhood one dreams of something like this, “he proclaimed. Iñaki Williams, one of the strongholds of an Athletic that left out Barça in the quarterfinals in February with an own goal of Busquets (1-0). The True eliminated in the same round Madrid (3-4).

There a historical end what’s wrong with it double prize for the winner: next Wednesday the derby in Anoeta in La Liga and the loser in Seville should do the corridor. «A unique moment is coming. Winning would be like fulfilling a dream, “said the international. Oyarzabal.

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Catalan referee

The final will have another novelty. The Catalan Xavier Estrada Fernandez will referee the duel assisted on the wings by Roberto Alonso Fernández and Guadalupe Porras Ayuso. The Extremaduran will be the first referee present in a final of the Copa del Rey in which she will not miss Felipe VI. The monarch will be accompanied in the box by Luis Rubiales, the president of the Spanish federation.

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“May the day come when a woman referee stops being news and no distinctions are made by sex. I work in the same way as my colleagues “, he valued this Friday Guadeloupe, who is not particularly nervous about the crash. “I have very good feelings,” he remarked.

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