Real Sociedad reached the Copa del Rey final for the first time since 1988 as a 1-0 win at Mirandes on Wednesday clinched a 3-1 aggregate semi-final triumph.

The two-time Copa winners have been in outstanding form in recent weeks, climbing to sixth in LaLiga, and a sixth straight win in all competitions ended a 32-year wait to return the showpiece.

La Real will now face either Granada or Athletic Bilbao - in action on Thursday, with Sociedad's Basque rivals 1-0 up - next month after building on a narrow home lead against second-tier Mirandes.

Imanol Alguacil's side still did not quite hit the heights of their stunning quarter-final triumph at Real Madrid, but inspirational captain Mikel Oyarzabal tucked away his second penalty of the tie four minutes before half-time, and Mirandes could not recover.

Nacho Monreal hung up an early cross and Adnan Januzaj directed a towering header from it just wide, but the game's next effort of note did not follow until Limones parried clear Willian Jose's powerful 20-yard drive with 26 minutes on the clock.

That attempt came amid an improved spell from the visitors, and they had their breakthrough before the break after Mickael Malsa blocked Joseba Zaldua's cross with his arm.

Skipper Oyarzabal kept his nerve from 12 yards, sending Limones the wrong way to stretch La Real's aggregate lead and cancel out their opponents' away goal.

Januzaj went agonisingly close to a second shortly after the restart, but his swirling strike from wide on the right crashed away off the crossbar after beating Limones.

Chances were scarce at the other end, however, and Alex Remiro pounced on Matheus Aias' tame close-range header as Sociedad eased to victory, with a stoppage-time second from substitute Alexander Isak disallowed for offside.


What does it mean? Sociedad set for season of success

La Real have hit form at a great time. They are firmly in the hunt for Champions League qualification through LaLiga due to their winning run, and now a major honour is also in their sights. Sociedad will fancy their chances against either potential final opponent, but a clash with rivals Athletic would be particularly special.

Captain keeps his cool

Each leg of this tie was balanced, yet Oyarzabal stepped up with a key strike from the penalty spot on both occasions. Sociedad needed a goal before half-time and, sure enough, their skipper - the team's chief creative force throughout - dispatched the spot-kick.

Franquesa found wanting

It could quite easily have been Januzaj, not Oyarzabal, who proved Sociedad's semi-final hero. The winger gave left-back Enric Franquesa a torrid time. The gulf between the teams was evident each time the defender was isolated, and better end product from Januzaj might well have led to further goals.

What's next?

La Real's attention returns to LaLiga and a top-four bid, with champions Barcelona up next on Saturday. Mirandes have a more modest trip to Alcorcon on Sunday.

Real Sociedad scraped past second-tier Mirandes at Anoeta on Thursday to claim a narrow 2-1 first-leg advantage in their Copa del Rey semi-final.

La Real stunned Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu in the previous round, but Mirandes had knocked out three LaLiga teams en route to the last four and caused concern for top-flight opposition once more.

Captain Mikel Oyarzabal dispatched a ninth-minute spot-kick for Sociedad, yet they were pegged back by Matheus Aias and scarcely deserved the second Martin Odegaard lashed in to restore their lead before the interval.

The second period brought marginal improvement in the home ranks but no further goals, leaving the tie in the balance ahead of the return fixture next month.

Sociedad's opener came only after Alex Remiro was forced into a smart, low stop from Martin Merquelanz with just five minutes on the clock.

Portu earned a penalty as Odei Onaindia dallied in the area and allowed the home winger to get between man and ball before going down, and Oyarzabal coolly converted from 12 yards.

Mirandes deservedly levelled six minutes before half-time, as Mickael Malsa pounced on some careless play 20 yards from goal and fed Matheus Aias, the striker twisting to send in a low shot that deflected beyond Remiro.

But Sociedad responded swiftly. Limones spilled Odegaard's powerful drive but recovered well to block Portu's follow-up, only for the Real Madrid loanee to rifle in a second rebound.

Matheus Aias blazed over from close range heading into the break, while there were big saves at either end following the restart, Limones denying Portu before Remiro parried an Antonio Sanchez strike.

The two goalkeepers were largely underworked thereafter until Limones superbly turned away a header from one of his own defenders in the fourth minute of stoppage time, teeing up an intriguing second leg at Estadio Municipal de Anduva.


What does it mean? Sociedad warned

Mirandes' earlier exploits in this competition meant La Real had no excuse as they faced this stern examination, surely well aware of the threat their opposition posed. The LaLiga side still struggled to get to grips with Merquelanz and Alvaro Rey, though, and must be better in the return leg to get the job done.

Martin up for the cup

Odegaard is enjoying a fine season in San Sebastian, and he has saved some of his best performances for this cup run. His third goal in the competition this term came at a crucial time, while a gorgeous pass early in the second half set Portu through, the busy wide man unable to beat Limones for a two-goal lead that might have put the tie beyond Mirandes.

Lacking in key areas

On the balance of play - particularly in the first half - Mirandes were good value for at least a draw from this first leg, but shortcomings at either end of the pitch proved costly. Onaindia paid the price as he reacted slowly to a ball into the box and felled Portu, while Matheus Aias, despite scoring a fortunate equaliser, missed one big opportunity.

What's next?

Focus returns to league action for the coming weeks, with La Real visiting Eibar on Sunday as Mirandes host Albacete. The two sides reconvene for the Copa second leg at Mirandes on March 4.

Athletic Bilbao and Real Sociedad could meet in the Copa del Rey final after the Basque rivals were kept apart in the semi-final draw.

Sociedad secured their place in the last four with a thrilling 4-3 win over Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu on Thursday, with Athletic beating Barcelona 1-0 hours later thanks to a last-gasp Inaki Williams header.

It marked the first time in 65 years that LaLiga's top two clubs were eliminated from the Copa on the same day.

Gaizka Garitano's Athletic will now face Granada, who knocked out holders Valencia in the quarter-finals, while Sociedad will meet Segunda Division side Mirandes.

Athletic and Sociedad will host their respective first legs, which take place on February 12, with the return fixtures scheduled for March 4.

The final is expected to be held on April 18 at La Cartuja in Seville, which last hosted a major club football match in 2003, when it staged the UEFA Cup final between Porto and Celtic.

Julen Lopetegui apologised to supporters after Sevilla suffered a shock elimination from the Copa del Rey at the hands of second-tier Mirandes on Thursday.

Sevilla succumbed to a 3-1 loss in the last-16 match at the Municipal de Anduva, with Matheus Aias sending Mirandes into half-time with a 2-0 lead.

Lopetegui made three substitutions at the break and were lucky the Segunda Division side did not extend their lead when Diego Carlos conceded a penalty by fouling Alvaro Pena, who saw his effort from 12 yards kept out by Tomas Vaclik.

Alvaro Rey put the result beyond doubt five minutes from time, with Nolito's 90th-minute goal providing scant consolation.

"We apologise. We are all tremendously sad, but we have to back up quickly," said Lopetegui.

"We were prisoners of our bad start and they took advantage to get ahead. In this format, one bad game means you are eliminated.

"The first goal was key. It gave them a lot of energy and generated doubts [for us].

"When three substitutions are made, it's because the first one to make a mistake was the coach.

"We tried to score early in the second half but everything was against us. The goal we expected did not come and we have been eliminated by a good team that was superior.

"It's a big blow, without a doubt. We were very excited, but we have to pick ourselves up."

Mirandes will be the only team from outside LaLiga in the quarter-final draw on Friday.

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