Antoine Griezmann’s two goals helped FC Barcelona survive underdog Ibiza in the round of 32 at the Copa del Rey soccer tournament.
The French forward scored a 72nd minute equalizer before netting the game winner in stoppage time of the 2-1 triumph Wednesday in Ibiza, Spain.
“I think it was a team effort in the end,” Griezmann told FCBarcelona.com. “We found it difficult at the start. In the first half we didn’t have a shot on target … I think we were better in the second half and showed more conviction and desire and turned it around.”
Pep Caballe put Ibiza ahead with a score in the ninth minute. Ibiza midfielder J.P. Mateo dribbled down the left flank before finding the striker in the box during the sequence. Cabelle finished the play with a one-touch shot into the lower right corner of the net, beating Barcelona keeper Neto for first blood.
Ibiza carried the unlikely lead into halftime before Barcelona rallied to avoid an upset.
Frenkie de Jong sparked the equalizer by dribbling up the middle of the field before placing a precise grounded pass ahead for Griezmann. The Barcelona striker held off a defender before running into the box and slicing a shot into the near-post netting with his left boot.
Griezmann returned to the net in the 94th minute. Jordi Alba had the ball about 50 yards from the goal at the start of that scoring sequence. The Barcelona star grounded a long ball up the left flank, sending Griezmann toward the corner flag. Greizmann grabbed the pass before using his left boot to send a shot into the far-post netting, beating Ibiza keeper German for the decisive score.
“These things will happen to us,” Barcelona manager Quique Setien said. “You can’t win a game in 60 minutes. Having so much of the ball takes it [energy] out of your opponents, then they left space and we took advantage of that.”
Barcelona battles Valencia in La Liga play at 10 a.m. EST Saturday at Mestallla Stadium in Valencia, Spain.
“I’m really happy because we never gave up and we kept on trying,” Setien said. “We knew as the game went on, we would have more chances. That’s what happened.”