By 90Min
January 26, 2018

Barcelona defeated local rivals Espanyol to progress to the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey on Thursday night, as goals from Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez were enough to overturn the 1-0 deficit going into the second leg.

Following the dramatic exit to their city rivals, some from Espanyol have been left unhappy with the conduct of the Barcelona players following the full-time whistle and have even demanded an investigation into particular comments made by defender Gerard Pique. 

Marca report that Espanyol are calling on the anti-violence committee to investigate Pique after he labelled the club 'Espanyol de Cornella.'

Pique's comment is a jibe at Espanyol's location and identity, calling them Espanyol 'of Cornella' rather than Espanyol de Barcelona, which is their actual name. Cornella is a suburb of the city of Barcelona.

In 2009, Espanyol moved to Cornella and the newly constructed RCDE Stadium from Montjuïc, a hill which overlooks the city. 

"Yes, of course, Espanyol de Cornella, they're from Cornella right?" Pique joked after the match. 

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Espanyol want Pique's comments investigated as they believe that what he said could incite violence, xenophobia, and intolerance between fans. Their complaint will be taken up with the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) and the Competitions Department of La Liga.

Espanyol's statement reads: "We consider that any demonstration in a clearly derogatory tone towards these cities, such as those uttered by Mr Pique towards the city of Cornella, flirt very dangerously with xenophobic attitudes."

Alex Caparros/GettyImages

The club have also complained about similar comments made by Pique's Barcelona teammate Sergio Busquets.

"They celebrated in Cornella as if they had progressed to the next round, but ties last 180 minutes," said the midfielder. "We put them in their place."

Espanyol released a similar statement, condemning the comments made by Busquets: "The statements made by Busquets are totally contrary to the values of respect in football. These can be generators of violence and intolerance."

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