Barcelona defender Gerard Pique said that his Real Madrid counterpart Sergio Ramos was lucky to avoid a red card in the Copa del Rey semi final first leg on Wednesday.

Ramos was booked in the tenth minute of the match at the Nou Camp and was perhaps fortunate to escape a second caution for a foul on Arthur and a later incident involving Luis Suarez.

​Pique admitted that referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz, who dished out six yellow cards, had a good game, but claimed that ​Ramos should have been dismissed.

"In general, he has had a good match," Pique said after the game, quoted by ​Goal"It was a red card for Sergio, but what can we do?"

Malcom,Sergio Ramos

Malcom cancelled out Lucas Vazquez's opener but ​Barcelona were unable to take an advantage into the second leg despite the introduction of ​Lionel Messi in the second half.

Pique was impressed by Messi's fitness following a thigh injury and hoped that he would be available for Sunday's La Liga match away at Athletic Bilbao.

"I've seen him very well, fast. He has not felt the discomfort he had and it's good news," he said. "We hope to have him available to help us for the San Mames match."

Lionel Messi

Barcelona will hope to extend their lead at the top of the table this weekend, with their closest challengers - Real and Atletico Madrid - meeting at the Wanda Metropolitano on Saturday.

Ernesto Valverde's team also face Valladolid and Sevilla in La Liga, as well as Lyon in the Champions League, before the return leg at the Santiago Bernabeu on 27 February.