Barca cruise past Cultural Leonesa in Copa del Rey

Barcelona players jubilate after the Copa del Rey thrashed Cultural Leonesa 4-1 on Wednesday to progress to the last 16 of the torunament on aggregate on Wednesday.

MADRID — Denis Suarez struck twice for Copa del Rey holders Barcelona as they thrashed Cultural Leonesa 4-1 on Wednesday to progress to the last 16 5-1 on aggregate.

The Barcelona midfielder has barely been used this season but put himself in the shop window with a confident display against the third-tier visitors in a comfortable round of 32 second-leg victory.

Holding a 1-0 first-leg lead Barcelona soon stretched that advantage, with Munir El Haddadi slamming a strike into the top corner after 18 minutes to complete a slick team move.

Suarez curled home a delightful second from distance to double the lead and Malcom headed in the third from Ivan Rakitic's cross.

The Croatian captained a much rotated side, with key players like Lionel Messi and Gerard Pique left out of the squad to rest for Saturday's Catalan derby against Espanyol.

Sene pulled a goal back from close range but highly-rated playmaker Riqui Puig appeared in the second half for his Barcelona debut and created the fourth goal with a sweet dink that Suarez dispatched coolly.

The only blemish for Barca came when Brazilian winger Malcolm appeared to suffer a late injury and was taken off, amid an injury crisis at the club with Luis Suarez, Samuel Umtiti and Sergi Roberto among players sidelined.

Barcelona, who have won the competition a record 30 times and for the last four seasons, will be joined in the next round by Real Sociedad, who knocked out Celta Vigo 3-1 on aggregate after a 2-0 win.

Villarreal thrashed Almeria 8-0 (11-3) to progress with striker Karl Toko Ekambi scoring four, while Sevilla edged past Villanovense 1-0 (1-0) thanks to Andre Silva's 49th minute strike and Real Valladolid beat Mallorca 2-1 (4-2).

Atletico Madrid hammered Sant Andreu 4-0 (5-0), while Girona came from behind to beat Alaves 2-1 (4-3).

A second-half salvo from Atletico Madrid helped them sweep past Sant Andreu. Three goals in eight minutes after the break from Thomas Lemar, Nikola Kalinic and Angel Correa helped Diego Simeone’s side coast to victory against the fourth-tier Catalan side in the round of 32 second leg at the Wanda Metropolitano.

Elhadji Bandeh hit the post in the first half for the visitors and Antonio Adan produced an impressive save to keep out the Sant Andreu striker's header from close range. However, Lemar's fine long-range effort sent Atletico ahead after 48 minutes, Kalinic headed home and Correa soon fired in a third.

Vitolo added a fourth with nine minutes remaining to complete a comfortable victory for Atletico. — Reuters