Real Madrid head to the scene of some
bitter memories this week when they travel to the Canary Islands to play
second division Tenerife in the King's Cup.
In the early 1990s Tenerife, then in the Primera Liga, twice deprived
Real of the league title by dealing them a season-ending defeat that
handed first place to arch-rivals Barcelona.
Now Tenerife, dubbed the "Cursed Island" for Real Madrid by newspaper
Marca, are keen to see history repeated.
"I would advise them to turn up with all their stars because they are
going to meet a hostile environment," Tenerife's Vitolo told AS daily.
Real Madrid are the biggest name still standing in the competition after
shock first round defeats for the likes of Barcelona, Valencia and
holders Real Zaragoza.
Despite Tenerife's warning, Real coach Mariano Garcia Remon has opted to
keep his galacticos at home for the showdown -- with Raul, Ronaldo, Figo
and Zinedine Zidane all missing.
However Fernando Morientes, Michael Owen and Ivan Helguera are all set
"If we go out, there will be no excuses and we cannot say that we didn't
care," said Garcia Remon, with some players apparently still smarting
from last year's dramatic extra-time loss in the final to Zaragoza
"I want to stay in the cup and win it. It is the one award I have not
won," Helguera told Marca.
Deportivo Coruna, struggling in the league and the Champions League,
will take nothing for granted against second division Elche.
"It will be very complicated," said winger Pedro Munitis. "Elche are
enjoying a period of top form."
Third division Gramenet, who humiliated league Barcelona in the first
round, face Levante -- the surprise team in the top flight after
climbing to third place.
On Thursday second division Gimnastic will be hoping to add the scalp of
Atletico Madrid to their first round victory over Cup holders Real
Sevilla, who are fourth in the league, face struggling second division
club Ciudad de Murcia. Second division Lleida, who knocked out Valencia,
will meet Terrassa who caused another shock with their defeat of
The one-off ties are played at the grounds of the lower ranked teams on
November 10 and 11. Where teams are in the same division, the first out
of the hat plays at home.