Lewandowski hits two as Barca thrash Ceuta in Copa del Rey
Ceuta, Spain, Jan 19, 2023 (AFP) - Barcelona romped to a 5-0 win over minnows Ceuta to reach the Spanish Cup quarter-finals on Thursday, riding the wave after winning their first trophy of the season last week.
The Catalans lifted the Spanish Super Cup in Riyadh with a convincing triumph over Real Madrid, and after initially struggling to break down Ceuta's defence, eventually the goals arrived.
Robert Lewandowski struck twice, while Raphinha, Ansu Fati and Franck Kessie also netted for Barcelona, who have won the Spanish Cup a record 31 times.
Xavi's side took helicopters to Ceuta after flying to Malaga in the morning by jet, just as they did when visiting the North African coast for a Spanish Cup match back in 2010.
Perhaps the trip to the tiny Spanish territory which borders Morocco took something out of the Catalans, as they struggled to create danger in the first half.
Coach Xavi Hernandez made several rotations which didn't help either, with only Lewandowski starting from the team which won the Spanish Super Cup last Sunday.
Raphinha sent a cross-shot wide of the far post, while at the other end Rodri Rios sent a dangerous header into the side-netting.
Barcelona's Brazilian winger Raphinha eventually broke the deadlock before the break when he cut inside from the right and curled home with his left foot.
Five minutes into the second half Robert Lewandowski doubled Barcelona's lead with a clinical finish after good work by Franck Kessie.
Substitute Ansu Fati netted the third, driving into the area from the left flank and firing into the far corner after 70 minutes.
Ceuta striker Rodri had a chance to pull one back for his side but mis-controlled a pass and Barcelona's reserve goalkeeper Inaki Pena stole in to collect the ball.
Former AC Milan midfielder Kessie added Barcelona's fourth to round off his own impressive second half display, while Lewandowski curled home a late fifth to seal the rout.
The quarter-final draw takes place on Friday.
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