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Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Barcelona enjoy big win

Barcelona moved a step closer to a possible Copa del Rey quarter-final showdown with Real Madrid after winning the first leg of their last-16 tie against Osasuna 4-0 at the Nou Camp.

Barca beat Osasuna 8-0 at home in the Primera Division back in September and the Pamplona-based side must have feared another mauling when Cesc Fabregas netted twice in the opening 18 minutes - the second a superb chip.

As it was, a strong Barca added two more goals from Lionel Messi, who climbed off the bench to net in the 72nd and 90th minutes.

The Argentinian's first goal was a close-range header and the second was a fine curling effort from the edge of the box - taking his tally to 31 goals in all competitions this season.

With Madrid fighting back from 2-0 down to beat Malaga 3-2 in their first leg on Wednesday night, the two Spanish giants remain on course for a repeat of last season's final - which Jose Mourinho's side won 1-0 - in the last eight of this season's competition.

In the night's other last-16 first leg, Real Sociedad continued their good recent form with a 2-0 home win over Real Mallorca.

Sociedad, who have climbed away from the foot of the Primera Division table on the back of five-match unbeaten run, took the lead through Mikel Aranburu in the 17th minute and Imanol Agirretxe added the second nine minutes into the second half.

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