Atletico set up Real Madrid clash

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Atletico Madrid set up a crosstown Copa del Rey clash with Real Madrid despite drawing 2-2 with third-division Hospitalet on Thursday, advancing 5-2 on aggregate.

Striker Mario Mandzukic slotted in Atletico’s opener in the 19th minute and headed in a second in the 74th, seven minutes after Hospitalet’s Ruben Alcaraz got his first goal. Mandzukic has 14 goals since arriving to replace Diego Costa for the Spanish champions.

Alcaraz struck again in the 84th with a long shot that sailed over goalie Jan Oblak and hit the crossbar before going in.

Oblak, however, spared Atletico an embarrassing loss with a one-handed save in the 89th.

Atletico now face Real, who beat them in the semi-finals last season, in the last 16. “This year we have only lost one game at home at the Calderon and this shows the work of the players,” Simeone told a news conference.

“Hopefully we can keep going the same way. In terms of this game I am happy with what I saw. We started well and scored while in the second half the Hospitalet players responded well.

“They had a bit of luck with their first goal and the second was something special

•Sport writer/blogger • Media strategist •Good citizen of Nigeria and Social Media Evangelist and a core die hard Real Madrid fan.

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