Alexis vs. Granada / PHOTO: Miguel Ruiz - FCB

FC Barcelona hosted Granada at the Camp Nou on September 22nd of 2012 for Week 5 of La Liga. Granada were surprisingly daring in Barcelona and they nearly nicked a point from the match if it hadn’t been for a last-gasp shot from Xavi. Barça increased its lead on 91 minutes when Boja Gómez diverted a cross into his own goal. The match ended with 2-0 on the scoreboard.

FORM GUIDE & THE BOSS

Granada are 14th on 26 points from 23 matches. Flirting with the relegation zone for most of season, Granada decided to sack its manager and hand the reins of the team to Luis Lucas Alcaraz, who managed Granada from 1995 through 1998. The last few weeks have seen the Andalusians climb the table and create a healthy, albeit not completely safe, six-point cushion between them and Celta (18th, relegation zone).

Granada’s improved form is even more impressive when we take into account the teams the Andalusians have faced in the past two weeks. Alcaraz’s first match at the Granada helm was against Real Madrid at Los Cármenes stadium. His team won by 1-0 and the following week they thumped Deportivo de La Coruña with three unanswered goals.

ONES TO WATCH

Granada were one of the most active teams in the January transfer window as they picked up Aranda, Recio and ex-Barça player Nolito (all of whom started in last week's victory over Deportivo), and Buonanotte from Málaga. In addition to the newcomers, Granada boast enough fire power to make any rival uncomfortable. Of the teams 22 goals so far this season, 36% of them have been scored by El-Arabi and the fullback Siqueira.