NEWS | 15/02/2019 | Nacho DíazIt's the fourth time the rivals meet in the Copa del Rey quarter-finals (9:30pm CET).
The Copa is always special; the players say so themselves. Among those raring to go, is Felipe Reyes, who will be participating in the competition for a record-breaking twentieth time. Tonight could see him move top of the all-time Copa appearances chart in the ACB era with 45. The Whites' captain continues to smash records, and will be in search of his seventh title, making him the most decorated player in the tournament's history. Meanwhile, this will be the debut edition for three madridistas: Prepelic, Deck and Kuzmic.
The Whites head into the clash boasting simply scandalous numbers, ensuring they are the best squad of the eight in several areas: offense, PIR, rebounds, blocks and fouls received. Llull, who will be giving it his all to be fit, is the team's leading scorer; Tavares, the top in PIR; Ayón, the best rebounder and Campazzo has drawn the most fouls. They are all good signs as the Whites will be hoping to break the curse of the hosts - no team has won the Copa at their home court for seventeen years (not since 2002).
The Copa del Rey throws up a Madrid derby for the first time in fourteen years. The last time it happened was back in 2005, as Real Madrid overcame Estudiantes 86-76. Today is a totally different story though. The college side come into the clash with their confidence sky-high following their League triumph just over a month ago and the Whites will have to make sure they learned their lesson from the errors made in that game. Clavell, Brizuela, Gentile and Whittington are a large part of Estudiantes' fine start to the year and it's sure to be another classic derby in this ever-special competition.