Copa del Rey format changed

The Copa del Rey, simply referred to as La Copa, is the most important annual knockout football competition in Spain, organized by the Royal Spanish Football Federation. The format of the competition had already been changed in the 2005-06 season: return matches were only played the last 32 matches.

Last year, 29 April 2019, the format was once again changed. This time, the competition has been expanded to 125 teams and all rounds have been changed into a single-match format, with the exception of the semi-finales. These will remain a two-leg tie.

Read more about the whole format and all the teams that will compete in the 2019-20 Copa del Rey below.

All 125 teams that compete in the Copa del Rey

CompetitionsTeamsFormat detailsTier
Regional Leagues20The winners of the 20 groups of the fifth tier5
Copa Federación*4Four semifinalists of the Copa Federación-
Tercera División32The best teams of the 18 groups of the 2018-19 season and the best 14 runners-up4
Segunda División B28The top seven teams out of four groups3
Segunda División21All 21 teams2
La Liga20All 20 teams1

* The Copa Federación (Federation Cup) is a Spanish football competition in which the third and fourth level-clubs of Spanish football compete – the Segunda División B and the Tercera División – clubs that have been eliminated in the first round of the Copa del Rey or that have failed to qualify.

Format and dates all rounds

Preliminary 13-11-2019
First round18-12-2019
Second round11-01-2020
Round of 3222-01-2020
Round of 1629-01-2020
Semifinals 12-02 and 04-03

In the very first phase, the preliminary round, only clubs qualified trough the 2018-19 fifth tier participate. These rounds took place 13th November 2019.

From the first rounds on, all clubs, even La Liga-clubs, enter the competition. The four participants of the Supercopa de España (Spanish Super Cup) are the only ones that will not compete – yet. They will enter in the round of 32. This year, the four clubs participating in the Spanish Super Cup are FC Barcelona, Atlético Madrid, Real Madrid and Valencia.

In the first two rounds, teams from La Liga will compete against the lowest divisions. Starting from the round of 32, opponents are decided by luck of draw. The semifinals are the only matches with a return match; this format enforces the away goals rule.

The Copa del Rey-winner will be assured a place for the 2020-21 UEFA Europa League group stage.

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