Copa del Rey

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Copa del Rey History

The Copa del Rey was Spain’s football national championship from 1903 until the foundation of the Campeonato de Liga, the League Championship, in 1928. Before the formation of La Liga in 1929, the competition was effectively a national championship. Teams qualified to enter via their regional leagues. Over the years, various formats, including group stages have been used. Reserve teams of the professional clubs, who compete in lower divisions of the league pyramid, were permitted to take part in 1990. All rounds are single-leg ties with lower division teams hosting the match and most of the top-level clubs entering in the first round. The semi-final is the only round played over two legs. The winners qualify for both the Supercopa de España and the UEFA Europa League.

 

Trophies

Throughout the history of the competition, there have been 12 actual trophies, which were permanently awarded to clubs for winning the competition either three times in a row or on five separate occasions and for other special reasons. Thus, five trophies have been permanently awarded to Barcelona, three to Athletic Bilbao and one to Real Madrid. On 22 December 2010, at an extraordinary general meeting of the Royal Spanish Football Federation, Sevilla requested permission from the Federation to keep the trophy they had won in the 2010 final to commemorate the victory of the Spanish national team at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. On 21 April 2011, Real Madrid became the first recipient of the trophy. During the post-game celebrations, the trophy was accidentally dropped by Real Madrid player Sergio Ramos from the top of a double-decker bus, which then ran over it. Ten pieces were found by civil servicemen when they recovered it from the ground at Plaza de Cibeles. The club received a copy of the Copa del Rey which is displayed at Santiago Bernabéu.

 

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Copa del Rey Records

FC Barcelona have won La Copa a record amount of 31 times. Athletic Club de Bilbao have won the trophy 23 times and Real Madrid have won it 19 times. The top goalscorer in the history of the Copa del Rey is Telmo Zarra who scored a total of 81 times for Athletic Bilbao from 1939 to 1957. The rest of the records are dominated by one man. Of course, it’s Lionel Messi. He holds the record for most goals scored in finals with 9. He holds the record for most finals scored in with 7, he has provided the most assists in finals with 6, he has the most man of the match awards in finals with 3, he has the most appearances in finals with 10 and he has the most Copa del Rey championship wins with 7.