Valencia Cup defence on the edge as they lose Villa | sports | Hindustan Times
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Valencia Cup defence on the edge as they lose Villa

sports Updated: Jan 22, 2009 10:16 IST
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Valencia's hopes of retaining their Spanish Cup trophy hang on a knife edge after they scraped a 3-2 home victory over Sevilla in their quarter-final first leg clash on Wednesday.

Indeed victory may have come at a cost as Spanish international striker David Villa, having scored their opener in the fifth minute had to come off injured later in the first-half and be replaced by former Spanish international Fernando Morientes.

Sevilla rebounded in the second-half to take a 2-1 lead as first Luis Fabiano and then Adriano gave them the advantage, though, the latter's goal had an air of offside about it.

However, Valencia showed resilience by scoring twice in the last seven minutes through Ruben Baraja and then Juan Mata to take their slender advantage to Sevilla next week.

The evening's other match saw Espanyol pull off a satisfactory result in their first match under former Argentine defender Mauricio Pochettino who replaced 'Mane' at the helm of the relegation-threatened club on Tuesday hold city rivals Barcelona 0-0.

Barca coach Josep Guardiola opted to rest the majority of his first choice players as is is habit for the Cup, though, he did send on Argentine star Lionel Messi and Spain's Euro 2008 winning playmaker Xavi in the second-half to try and force a victory.