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Barcelona held 2-2 by 10-man Malaga in Spanish Cup

Published on Jan 17, 2013 7:18 AM

MADRID (AFP) - Holders Barcelona's hopes of retaining the Spanish Cup hang in the balance after being held 2-2 at home by 10-man Malaga in their Spanish Cup quarter-final first leg clash on Wednesday.

Barcelona - who hold an 11-point lead in the league race over Atletico Madrid with 18 wins from 19 matches - looked to be in the driving seat after coming from a goal down to lead 2-1 after half-an-hour thanks to two goals in as many minutes by Lionel Messi and veteran talismanic defender Carles Puyol.

Malaga's chances of coming away with anything better than a one goal deficit looked to be over when Nacho Monreal was red carded 15 minutes from time for a trip on Pedro.

However, just as Malaga have shown in their maiden Champions League campaign that they are made of stern stuff so they did in Barcelona as Ignacio Camacho tucked the ball away neatly with a minute remaining after both Puyol and centre-back partner Javier Mascherano failed to get high enough to clear a free-kick.

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