A couple of Unai Simon saves saw Athletic beat Real Betis on penalties.
Athletic Club are in the draw for the Copa semi-finals after knocking out Real Betis. With the match tied at 1-1 after 120 minutes, it took a penalty shootout to break the deadlock.
A couple of fantastic saves by Unai Simon, who stopped efforts by Canales and Juanmi, plus four perfect shots by Marcelino’s lions saw them through to the semi-finals for a second consecutive year. Barcelona, Sevilla and Levante are the possible opponents.
It was an agonising match, just like those of last year. Sevilla is a city of good luck for the Lions, who are hoping to play in two Copa finals in 15 days in April. The King of the Copa is back.
It looked like Athletic were out of the competition, but a Raúl García powerful header in the 93rd minute rescued the Lions from the jaws of elimination.
The match was well balanced throughout, with both sides having spells of dominance.
Sergio Canales and Fekir threatened early on for the home side, while Asier Villalibre headed wide for Athletic.
As the minutes ticked on, Athletic looked like they might take the tie despite the number of lions in the referee’s book.
Seven minutes later, Oscar de Marcos could also have put the Rojiblancos ahead when he headed narrowly over from a great Yuri cross.
The match looked set for extra-time until Betis’ Juanmi scored a volley five minutes from time.
It seemed the Lions would be heading back to Bilbao with their tails between their legs.
But in the 93rd minute, forward Raúl García dragged Athletic into extra-time when he found space in the box to head Iñigo Martinez’s cross past Robles.
Jon Morcillo had the only meaningful chance during extra-time, his long-range drive stopped by Robles.
Athletic could count on a world-class goalkeeper in the penalty shootout. The Lions won 4-1 with Raúl García, Iñaki Williams, Morcillo and Yuri converting, whilst Simon pulled out two great saves to make sure only Mandi scored for Betis.
Athletic fans can now look forward to another Copa Del Rey semi-final!