La Liga

Raul: Always disappointing when Barca and not Madrid reach final

Raul lamented Real Madrid’s absence from the Copa del Rey final, adding it is always disappointing when bitter rivals Barcelona reach the decider.

LaLiga leaders Madrid failed to advance beyond the quarter-finals of the Spanish competition as titleholders Barca reached the showpiece for a third consecutive season.

Barca are set to face Alaves at a venue yet to be determined on May 27 and iconic former striker Raul – who won six LaLiga titles and three Champions League trophies during his time at the Santiago Bernabeu – bemoaned Madrid’s elimination from the Copa del Rey.

“Whenever you get knocked out of a competition – like what has happened to Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey, it’s always a disappointment and even more so when your biggest rivals reach the final,” Raul told Fox Sports Mexico.

“But we are entering a vital stage of the season with LaLiga and the Champions League.

“That’s not to say that the Copa isn’t important, but winning either of the other two competitions has more significance, and it changes the way a team’s season is viewed – it adds extra value.”

While he said it was disappointing to see Barca in the final, Raul talked up the importance of the Catalan giants to Madrid.

“Having Leo Messi and Barcelona is good for LaLiga – it’s a real delight,” the 39-year-old added.

“I don’t think Madrid would be Madrid without Barcelona and vice versa.”

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