Valencia and Rayo advance to Copa del Rey quarter-finals | professional soccer

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MADRID (AP) — Valencia reached their second Copa del Rey semi-final in four years by beating Cadiz 2-1 on Wednesday, while Rayo Vallecano made the last four for the first time in four decades by beating Mallorca 1-0 .

Hugo Duro scored the winner for Valencia in the 79th minute after setting up Gonçalo Guedes’ opener in the 24th to lead the hosts to the semi-finals for the first time since winning the title in 2019.

Cadiz scored with a penalty converted by Lucas Pérez in the 55th minute at the Mestalla stadium. He played the final minutes of the match with 10 men after Juan Cala was sent off with a second yellow for a hard sliding tackle.

Valencia’s only two wins in their last six games have come in Copa fixtures – against Cartagena in the round of 16 and Atlético Baleares in the round of 16. He occupies 10th place in the Spanish championship.

Cadiz beat Levante before the international break to end an eight-game league winless streak.

Valencia’s three new signings – Ilaix Moriba, Eray Comert and Bryan Gil – have made their debuts for the club.

Rayo continued their strong run at home beating Mallorca to reach the semi-finals for the first time since 1982.

Óscar Trejo converted a 44th-minute penalty to send the Madrid club, which hadn’t even reached the quarter-finals since 2002.

Rayo were unbeaten in their first 10 home games this season before losing to Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish league before the international break.

Mallorca, 2003 Copa champions, have made their debut with their three new signings – Giovanni González, Vedat Muriqi and goalkeeper Sergio Rico. American forward Matthew Hoppe came on early in the second half.

Rayo was missing striker Radamel Falcao, who played for Colombia in the World Cup qualifiers during the international break.

Real Madrid, who visit Athletic Bilbao in another Copa quarter-final on Thursday, will also have players missing due to international duty, as will Real Betis, who visit 2020 champions Real Sociedad the same day.

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