Ronald Koeman has slammed his Barcelona players for missing two penalties during their third-round Copa del Rey victory over UC Cornello at the Camp Municipal de Cornella on Thursday. Goals from Ousmane Dembele and Martin Braithwaite in extra time eventually sealed a 2-0 victory for Barca but only after Miralem Pjanic and Dembele had both failed to convert their spot-kicks in normal time. Despite progression into the last 16 of the Copa del Rey, Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman accused his players of "not being serious enough". while playing against the third-tier outfit.
Barcelona travelled to UD Cornella on Thursday night on red alert following their defeat against Athletic Bilbao in the final of the Supercopa de Espana earlier this week. With captain Lionel Messi suspended, a rotated Barcelona line-up laboured to victory after a third consecutive extra-time game in eight days. However, Barca had only themselves to blame for not finishing off their chances sooner.
In the 39th minute of the game, Barcelona were awarded a penalty after Ronald Araujo went down under a high foot from Albert Estelles. However, Pjanic's penalty was saved by Cornella goalkeeper Ramon Juan, who dove low to his right to keep the scores at 0-0 heading into half time.
Barcelona struggled to create many chances in the second period but were awarded another golden chance to take the lead when Clement Lenglet was fouled inside the box. Substitute Ousmane Dembele stepped up to take the spot-kick this time but fired his effort straight down the middle for the keeper to save. The scores after 90 minutes were surprisingly 0-0 as Barcelona failed to convert both of their spot-kicks during normal time.
FULL-TIME OF REGULAR TIME: Cornella 0-0 Barcelona. Ronald Koeman's men are going to extra-time for the third time in just over a week having missed two penalties against third-tier Cornella. Incredible stuff.— footballespana (@footballespana_) January 21, 2021
However, Dembele made up for his earlier miss just two minutes into extra time with a vicious effort. Cornella were then down to 10 men after Albert Estelles was sent off for and Martin Brathwaite sealed the win for the LaLiga side with virtually the last kick of the game.
Despite making it to the last 16 of the Copa del Rey, Barcelona boss Ronald Koeman was left disappointed with his team's display and he didn't hold back any criticism. In his post-match interview with Marca, the Dutchman said, "Again we’ve played 120 minutes, which is important because we’ve played three games like this now. We’ve created opportunities and had two penalties, it can’t be [like this]. You can’t complain about their effort, but it’s not just running, it’s also being creative and effective. [The lack of this] has cost us a lot today. It cannot be [like this] and it cannot be accepted."