In the biggest upset of the tournament, Robredo demolished a badly out-of-sorts Federer 7-6(3) 6-3 6-4 in the fourth round, marking the first time in a decade the Swiss master has fallen before the quarter-finals at Flushing Meadows.
"I kind of feel like I beat myself, without taking any credit away from Tommy," a dejected Federer told reporters.
"I kind of self-destructed, which is very disappointing, especially on a quicker court. I just couldn't do it. It was a frustrating performance on Monday," Federer said.
As expected, Nadal safely made it through, recovering after losing a set for the first time in the tournament to beat Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-7(4) 6-4 6-3 6-1 at an electrified Arthur Ashe Stadium.
But his win was overshadowed by Federer's unforeseen loss against a player he had beaten in each of their 10 previous meetings, spoiling what was looming as the first meeting between the pair in the Big Apple.
"Two times we were one point away. This time we were one match away. But it's always the same," Nadal said.
"When I see the draw, I think about my first round. If I win, I think about my second. That's it,” he said.
"I don't see the quarter-finals or the fourth round before the first round. You know how tough is every tournament, every match," he added.


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