The Champions League and the thriller on Wednesday against Spartak Moscow are now behind them. 72 hours after their European debut, FC Barcelona will be looking to maintain their one hundred per cent record in la Liga as they host Granada. A win would leave the league leaders in the perfect position before two of the trickiest fixtures of the season, the trip to the Sánchez Pizjuán (September 29) and the clásico against Real Madrid at the Camp Nou (October 7).
Jordi Alba back
FC Barcelona face the Andalusians with a number of absences in their rearguard. Without Puyol and Piqué, Tito Vilanova will need to change his defensive plans. The most likely candidates to join Mascherano as the other centre back are Bartra and Song, although Sergio Busquets has also shown in the past that he’s capable of playing in that position. But those problems aside, Barça can welcome back Jordi Alba, who is now fully recovered from a nasty attack of the flu.
It’s still early days in the domestic championship, but there are already alarm bells ringing in the Granada camp. The side now managed by Juan Antonio Anquela, who worked such wonders at Alcorcón when they knocked Real Madrid out of the cup in 2009, have yet to win a match this season. They have only two points in their account so far, picked up in home draws against Sevilla (1-1) and Deportivo (1-1). On the road, they have yet to even score, having lost 1-0 at Vallecas and 3-0 at the Bernabéu.