Semi-professional third-tier club have knocked out Atlético Madrid in a remarkable cup run that also features a 1am winner

On Thursday Barcelona will travel less than 15 minutes east from the Camp Nou, a trip they normally do once a season. This time, though, they won’t enter the 40,500-capacity RCD Stadium but the small municipal ground that lies in its shadow; their opponents won’t be their city rivals Espanyol, relegated last season, but UE Cornellà from Spain’s Segunda B, the regionalised, semi-professional third tier where 102 teams are spread across 10 groups.

“Our pitch is almost half the size of the one at Camp Nou, and it’s artificial grass – that will be in our favour,” the Cornellà midfielder Àlex Pla says as he prepares for the last-32 Copa del Rey tie.

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