Bale fluffs glorious chance of late Real winner after Malcom rescues Copa del Rey semi-final first-leg draw for Barca

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GARETH BALE fluffed a glorious late chance of a Real winner after Barcelona fought back well for a Copa del Rey semi-final first leg draw – despite being without Lionel Messi.

Ernesto Valverde declined to risk main man Messi following his weekend thigh injury – but the Argentina legend was badly missed when Real clearly edged the first half.

Gareth Bale cannot believe it after cocking up a gaping chance to clinch a first-leg win for Real
Gareth Bale cannot believe it after cocking up a gaping chance to clinch a first-leg win for Real
Getty – Contributor
Malcom has had a mixed time at Barcelona and was overjoyed to bag the leveller
Malcom has had a mixed time at Barcelona and was overjoyed to bag the leveller
AFP OR LICENSORS

Lucas Vazquez bagged Real’s soft, sixth-minute opener in a first 45 minutes that sparked without ever quite exploding into life.

Vinicius Junior crossed for Karim Benzema to control and feed Spain winger Vazquez, who drilled home from the middle of the box.

Ivan Rakitic deflected Barcelona team-mate Malcom’s centre onto the bar.

But Valverde’s men spluttered before the interval.

Brazil starlet Malcom pounced to make it 1-1 against Real Madrid in the 57th minute
Brazil starlet Malcom pounced to make it 1-1 against Real Madrid in the 57th minute
Getty Images – Getty
Lucas Vazquez celebrates his opener for Real Madrid in the El Clasico with Sergio Ramos
Lucas Vazquez celebrates his opener for Real Madrid in the El Clasico with Sergio Ramos
Getty Images – Getty

Yet Malcom poached a 57th minute leveller that transformed the tie.

Real skipper Sergio Ramos cleared a Luis Suaez shot off the line but Malcom nipped onto the rebound to fire home beautifully.

Bale, though, wasted a gaping opportunity on 84 minutes when Barca keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen dashed out but was beaten to the ball by Benzema.

The Frenchman quickly fed the Wales star on the left but Bale cut inside ponderously and saw his shot blocked by covering defenders.

Barcelona's German goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen has little chance as Lucas Vazquez hits the opener
Barcelona’s German goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen has little chance as Lucas Vazquez hits the opener
AFP OR LICENSORS
Luis Suarez looks forlorn after Barcelona fell behind to Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey semi-final first leg
Luis Suarez looks forlorn after Barcelona fell behind to Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey semi-final first leg
Getty Images – Getty
Real Madrid defender Dani Carvajal is down injured as ref Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz looks on
Real Madrid defender Dani Carvajal is down injured as ref Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz looks on
Reuters
Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde, right, watches on concerned - with Real chief Santiago Solari also surveying a tight first-half
Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde, right, watches on concerned – with Real chief Santiago Solari also surveying a tight first-half
AP:Associated Press

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