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Copa del Rey draw is made: Villarreal face Comillas CF

A new format this year.

Villarreal flag Allen Dodson

The draw for the first elimination round of the Copa del Rey that involves the Primera teams took place, and Villarreal have been drawn against Comillas CF, a team from Logroño (Rioja region).

They play in the Tercera División, Group 16, and are currently 14th; they were promoted as champions of their regional league last season. Comillas play their home matches in the grandly named “Estadio Mundial 82” which holds 1275. And, they played in the preliminary round against Barquereño and won on penalties.

On paper, then, a good draw, but I suspect this season’s new format—something many have been clamoring for for years—will throw up some surprises. The biggest change is that all matches are one-legged, played at the ground of the lower-division team (as happens in the French cup).

If two teams from the same division are drawn against each other, the first one drawn is the home team. And, if the match ends in a draw, it goes to penalties (I assume after extra time). There are no replays.

The teams participating in the Spanish Supercopa don’t participate until the third round (round of 32) in mid-January. The rest of the Primera teams play in the first round.

I won’t go through the draw in detail (you can see it all here) but here are a couple of ties that stand out to me:

Becerril (the town has less than 1000 people) v Real Sociedad

Andorra v Leganés

Lleida Esportiu v Espanyol

Herculés v Recreativo Huelva

Castellón v Las Palmas

The matches are scheduled to be played on December 18th. One curiosity is that the town of Logroño has three teams drawn at home in this round, though—UD Logroñes and SD Logroñes play Marino Luanco and Eibar, respectively—so it could be our match is played on a different day. No confirmation yet.