Rayo avoids Copa loss in shootout against 5th-tier team
MADRID (AP) — Rayo Vallecano came close to becoming the first top-flight club to be eliminated in the first round of the Copa del Rey this season, needing a penalty shootout to get past fifth-division club Guijuelo on Thursday.
After a 1-1 draw following extra time, Rayo won the shootout 4-3 after the hosts missed a pair of penalties. Rayo goalkeeper Luca Zidane, son of former France great Zinedine Zidane, stopped the final penalty taken by Guijuelo.
Playing without veteran striker Radamel Falcao, Rayo took the lead with a goal by José Ángel Pozo in the fifth minute and Guijuelo equalized through Daniel García in the 19th.
Rayo played a man down from the 79th because of a red card to defender Kevin Rodrigues.
Another five first-division teams won against lower-tiered clubs.
Levante, last in the league standings, routed Huracán Melilla 8-0 with a hat trick by Álex Blesa. Osasuna defeated San Agustín 4-0, Valencia got past Utrillas 3-0, Elche won 2-0 at Leioa and Cádiz trounced Villa de Fortuna 7-0 with three goals by Álvaro Negredo.
This season’s edition of the Copa includes teams from all six divisions of Spanish soccer.
Atlético Madrid, Real Madrid, Barcelona and Athletic Bilbao, which will play in the Spanish Super Cup in January, are not playing in the opening round.
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