Goals by Carles Puyol and Eric Abidal gave Barcelona a 2-1 win over Real Madrid in the first leg of their Copa Del Rey quarter-final clash.
The Spanish and European champions came from a goal down to win seal a fine 2-1 win at the Santiago Bernabeu leaving Pep Guardiola’s men in prime position to qualify for the semi-finals with the second leg at the Camp Nou still to come.
Cristiano Ronaldo had fired hosts Real Madrid into an 11th minute lead with a rasping left-footed drive which squirmed beneath Barca goalkeeper Pinto.
Nevertheless, an unperturbed Barcelona side rallied back brilliantly in the second half and equalized courtesy of Carles Puyol’s thumping header.
The delightful Lionel Messi then chipped Eric Abidal through on goal in the 77th minute and the Frenchman made no mistake as he fired the winner beyond Casillas and into the Madrid net.
An ashen-faced Jose Mourinho could only watch on dejectedly as once again his arch-nemesis got the better of him leaving Los Blancos with much to do in the second leg at the Camp Nou.