Strengthened Granada looking to continue improvement

Alexis against Granada CF / FOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB
The new faces are fitting well into the side now coached by Lucas Alcaraz and have won two games in a row, with Real Madrid being one of the victims

The Andalusians are six points clear of relegation and will be looking for more points against a very difficult opponent in FC Barcelona

Granada CF host FC Barcelona on Saturday night at Los Cármenes in the 24th game of the Liga BBVA season. They’re 14th in the table now, six clear of relegation. The results have been going well for them of late, and following two clean sheets in two straight wins, the fans are full of optimism after an impressive win against Real Madrid two games ago.

Lucas Alcaraz turning things around

Granada sacked Anquela befoe those games, and Lucas Alcaraz’s arrival as been a success story so far. The Andalusians were busy during the winter transfer window and will hope for another inspiring performance against the Catalans. Eight players have left the club, including three loans, and have been replaced by five newcomers: Buonanotte, the former Malaga midfielder, Nolito, signed from Benfica and once at FCB, Aranda, the former Zaragoza striker, Recio, another acquisition from the Malaga midfield and Gomes, from Ponte Preta in Brazil who arrives on an immediate loan from Bologna in Italy.

Tough and consistent

Granada under Alcaraz are remarkable in their sobriety, physical strength and direct style of play. Having only won three games at home, the others ending in 4 draws and 4 defeats, the win against Madrid goes to show how much things have changed. This season they have conceded 1.39 goals a game and scored 0.96, while they have received 67 yellow cards and one red.

Xavi decides first encounter

Granada visited Barça, who had a 100% record, in the fifth game of the present season and managed to hold the Catalans until the last quarter of an hour until Xavi produced some 86th minute magic to break the deadlock, and then Borja Gómez scored in his own net in injury time to make it 2-0. In last season’s visit to Los Cármenes, Barça also found things hard going, and only got the three points thanks to a solitary goal, also scored by Xavi.