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04.03.2009 23:59

Cup final number 34

Jordi Clos

Barça are into the Copa del Rey final for the 34th time. On 24 of those occasions they have carried away the trophy, while the other nine appearances ended in disappointment.

The Kings of Cups are back into the King’s Cup Final, after an absence of eleven years. The venue will be Mestalla, the very same place they played their last final in 1998. In its 107 year history, the competition has had a variety of different names, but one clear dominator: FC Barcelona. They have 24 titles, one more than Athletic Club de Bilbao, who have, however, appeared in one final more than the Catalans.

First appearance in 1902

In fact, FCB took part in the very first edition of the cup, played in 1902. They faced Biscaia, a combination of Athletic Club players and others from other sides in the city, and it ended in 2-1 victory for the Basques. The first cup title for Barça came in 1910 against the now defunct Club Español de Madrid. Ever since then, Barça have been finalists on a regular basis.

Fabulous fifties

FINAL_COPA_1950-51._CxSAR_AMB_COPA.jpgIn fact, the run of eleven editions without making the final that has just ended was the longest ever. The longest Barça had gone without a final previously was the nine-year span between 1942 and 1951). That marked the beginning of the ‘Barça of the Five Cups’ era under Helenio Herrera, when the cup, called the Generalissimo’s Cup in those days, was won five times. Such dominance would be replicated in the 1980s and 1990s, with six more titles.

Athletic and Madrid, the most common opposition

FINAL_COPA_1950-51._CxSAR_AMB_COPA.jpgIn the 33 finals that FC Barcelona have played until now, Athletic Club de Bilbao (1920, 1932, 1942, 1953 and 1984) and Real Madrid (1936, 1968, 1974, 1983 and 1990) have provided the most common opposition, five times each. Another classic pairing is Barça versus Real Sociedad, which has occurred four times (1913, 1928, 1951 and 1988).
Cup final number 34
All the finals
1902 FCB-Viscaya 1-2
1910 FCB-Español Mad. 3-2
1912 FCB-Gimnástica M. 2-0
1913 FCB-R.Societat 2-1 
1919 FCB-Arenas Getxo 2-5 
1920 FCB-Athletic Club 2-0 
1922 FCB-Real Unión 5-1 
1925 FCB-Arenas Getxo 2-0 
1926 FCB-Atlético Madrid 3-2 
1928 FCB-R.Societat  3-1 
1932 FCB-Athletic Club  0-1 
1936 FCB-R.Madrid  1-2 
1942 FCB-Athletic Club  4-3 
1951 FCB-R.Societat  3-0 
1952 FCB-Valencia  4-2 
1953 FCB-Athletic Club  2-1 
1954 FCB-Valencia  0-3 
1957 FCB-Espanyol  1-0 
1959 FCB-Granada  4-1 
1963 FCB-Zaragoza  3-1 
1968 FCB-R.Madrid  1-0 
1971 FCB-Valencia  1-0 
1974 FCB-R.Madrid  0-4 
1978 FCB-Las Palmas  3-1 
1981 FCB-Sporting G.  3-1 
1983 FCB-R.Madrid  2-1 
1984 FCB-Athletic Club  0-1 
1986 FCB-Zaragoza  0-1 
1988 FCB-R.Societat  1-0 
1990 FCB-R.Madrid  2-0 
1996 FCB-Atlético Madrid  0-1 
1997 FCB-Betis  3-2 
1998 FCB-Mallorca  1-1

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