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Primera División

  • February 16, 2013
  • • 19:00
  • • Estadio Nuevo Los Cármenes, Granada
  • Referee: Carlos Del Cerro Grande
  • • Attendance: 22000
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Granada-Barcelona Preview: Blaugrana look to maintain momentum ahead of Milan clash

Granada-Barcelona Preview: Blaugrana look to maintain momentum ahead of Milan clash

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The runaway Liga leaders travel to face Lucas Alcaraz's resurgent side hoping to add to their 12-point advantage over Atletico Madrid at the top of the table

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

GRANADA

Tono
Nyom, Lopez, Mainz, Siqueira
Recio, M Rico
Torje, Aranda, Nolito
Ighalo
BARCELONA

Valdes
Alves, Pique, Mascherano, Adriano
Thiago, Song, Fabregas
Pedro, Messi, Sanchez


Granada midfielder Dani Benitez will miss Saturday's Primera Division encounter against Barcelona after undergoing a hernia operation earlier in the week.

Fran Rico (knee) is also sidelined, but boss Lucas Alcaraz has a full squad to choose from otherwise.

Barcelona assistant coach Jordi Roura is likely rest some his stars ahead of the midweek Champions League trip to AC Milan.

Striker David Villa will not travel to Andalusia after being hospitalised with kidney stones, while playmaker Xavi (hamstring) is still out.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Granada have won three of their last four matches in La Liga.
  • The Andalusian outfit have lost their last three encounters against Barcelona by an aggregate score of 3-8.
  • Granada have kept four clean sheets in their last five matches at Los Carmenes.
  • Barcelona have won just one of their last four away matches in all competitions (W1, D2, L1).
  • The Blaugrana boast the best attack in the Primera Division, with 78 goals scored in their 23 matches (3.3 goals per game).
  • Lionel Messi (pictured, right) has scored eight goals in his last five Liga matches for Barca.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
13ToñoGoalkeeper
2Allan NyomDefender
5MainzDefender
15Guilherme SiqueiraDefender
2Íñigo LópezDefender
17Mikel RicoMidfielder
-Gabriel TorjeMidfielder
28RecioMidfielder
9Carlos ArandaStriker
10NolitoStriker
11IghaloStriker
13RobertoGoalkeeper
9Borja GómezDefender
20Yacine BrahimiMidfielder
-Diego BuonanotteMidfielder
-Juanma OrtizMidfielder
-IrineyMidfielder
15Youssef El ArabiStriker
12Víctor ValdésGoalkeeper
22Daniel AlvesDefender
3PiquéDefender
21AdrianoDefender
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
6Thiago AlcántaraMidfielder
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
16BusquetsMidfielder
9Alexis SánchezStriker
10MessiStriker
7PedroStriker
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
5Carles PuyolDefender
18Jordi AlbaDefender
2MontoyaDefender
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
25Alex SongMidfielder
37TelloStriker
Players to Watch
Recio
Recio
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 28
Games Goals YC RC
1 0 0 0
The ex-Spain Under-21 international has been a mainstay in the Granada midfield since arriving on loan from Malaga in the January transfer window. A hard-running midfielder, Recio will have to put in a shift to deny Barcelona space in and around the 18-yard box.
Alexis Sánchez
Alexis Sánchez
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 9
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The Chilean's second season in Spain has largely been a disappointment as he has struggled to establish himself in the Barcelona starting XI. Sanchez scored his first Liga goal of the campaign in last weekend's 6-1 win over Getafe and will look to make the most of another likely start on Saturday.
Prediction
Following some shrewd signings in January, Granada seem well-positioned to make a push away from the relegation zone. However, the visitors are in imperious form and are more than capable of picking their way through the Andalusian side's dogged backline.
Editor's Prediction

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