Almeria take down Real Betis 4-3 in Copa del Rey off Mendez goal


MADRID–A goal and an assist by Edgar Mendez helped Almeria beat second-tier Real Betis 4-3 after withstanding a late comeback attempt in the first leg of their round-of-16 match in the Copa del Rey on Friday.

Almeria dominated the first half and was up 3-0 at the break but Betis scored three goals in the last 10 minutes to preserve some hope ahead of the second leg.

Jose Manuel Jimenez scored in the third minute from a corner before Thailand forward Teerasil Dangda doubled Almeria’s tally two minutes later by beating the offside trap and racing forward to smash the ball past goalkeeper Daniel Gimenez.

Enrique Gonzalez then headed Mendez’s free kick inside the far post in the 29th as Betis struggled to contain Almeria’s rapid attacks and well-worked set-pieces for the rest of the first half.

Mendez headed in a ball from Wellington Silva to make it 4-0 in the 61st, before Betis started its comeback attempt.

Ruben Casto at the far post tapped in Lorenzo Reyes’ goal-mouth cross to pull one back for Betis in the 80th before Poland defender Damien Perquis reached a high cross athletically to kick the ball into the net for Betis’ second five minutes later.

Jorge Molina headed in Daniel Pacheco’s corner for Betis’ third in the 90th.

Elsewhere, Pablo Sarabia scored twice and provided an assist to help Getafe beat Eibar 3-0.

Sarabia connected well with Pedro Leon’s cross from the right to open the scoring in the 63rd minute before passing the ball for Alvaro Vazquez to score with a skilful back-heel in the 80th.

Four minutes later Leon provided his second assist of the game for Sarabia to finish inside the near post.

Also, Albacete drew 1-1 with Levante. Midfielder Thierry Rua Moutinho scored for Albacete by pouncing on a rebound in the sixth.

Morocco defender Issam El Adoua leveled for Levante when he headed Jaime Gavilan’s free kick in the 68th after teammate Rafael missed a penalty in the 30th.