Debutant Carles Alena struck a superb second-half goal as Barcelona escaped an embarrassing defeat to settle with a 1-1 draw against Hercules in the first leg of their Copa del Rey last-32 tie here on Thursday.
After a goalless first half, it was Hercules who made the breakthrough first when David Mainz bundled the ball past Jasper Cillessen in the 52nd minute,goal.com reported.
However, Barcelona made amends only six minutes later, with Alena collecting a pass from captain Rafinha and rifling a magnificent left-footed strike to spare his side’s blushes.
Barcelona manager Luis Enrique had earlier made 11 changes in the squad, including resting star trio of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez ahead of the La Liga clash against Real Madrid to be held on Saturday.
The Spanish giants will now play the second leg against Hercules at Camp Nou on December 22.