Atletico confident of away form for Cup progress
MADRID, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Atletico Madrid are confident their expertise away from home will help them to see off in-form Osasuna in Pamplona and progress to the quarter-finals of the King's Cup on Wednesday.
Javier Aguirre's side drew 1-1 in the home leg last week when striker Fernando Torres scored a spectacular equaliser near the end, after the side had been reduced to 10 men.
Osasuna, Aguirre's former club, have won eight of their last 10 games in all competitions and trounced Real Betis 5-1 at home on Sunday.
Nine-times cup winners Atletico have the best away record in the league, however, along with city rivals Real, having lost only once away this season.
They swept aside Celta Vigo 3-1 away on Sunday thanks to the blooming partnership between Torres and Sergio Aguero. Torres bagged two and laid on a third for the Argentine.
'It was a great morale booster for Wednesday because we have to score in Pamplona to progress. Away from home we always produce the goods,' said Torres.
Atletico, who are fifth in the league, are not the only top side looking to improve on a first-leg draw.
Primera Liga leaders Sevilla take on third division Rayo Vallecano at home, having been held goalless last week. Juande Ramos's side have yet to win a game in 2007.
Third-placed Real Madrid drew 0-0 with Real Betis but are favourites to overcome a side struggling in the lower reaches of the table, at the Bernabeu on Thursday.
Five league wins on the trot for fourth-placed Valencia put them at an advantage for the visit of Quique Sanchez Flores's former club Getafe. The tie is balanced at 1-1.
Second division leaders Valladolid caused the surprise of the last-16 first legs by taking a 2-1 lead over Primera Liga Villarreal.
Manuel Pellegrini's misfiring side achieved a lift with their first win in six games away at Athletic Bilbao on Sunday but have left Argentine playmaker Juan Roman Riquelme on the bench once again for Wednesday's home game.
Barcelona have failed to win in their last three league games but should have little problem at home to second division Alaves on Tuesday with a 2-0 first-leg lead.
The same goes for Real Zaragoza who have a 3-0 lead over second division Malaga.
Deportivo Coruna have a 2-1 edge over Real Mallorca but will be wary of a side who beat league leaders Sevilla 2-1 away on Sunday.