Barcelona looks to cut the gap to

Barcelona looks to cut the gap to

MADRID - Reuters
Barcelona can trim Real Madrid’s lead at the top of La Liga to five points when it hosts Granada tonight after the Real juggernaut took a skid in a 1-1 draw at home to Malaga on March 18.

Real, on 71 points to Barça’s 63 with 11 games left, face a tough trip tomorrow to Villarreal, who is fighting to preserve its top-flight status after a 1-0 defeat at Levante left the team three points above the relegation places.

It will be a baptism of fire for Miguel Angel Lotina, Villarreal’s third coach of the campaign, hastily hired yesterday to replace the sacked Jose Molina.

Barça is trailing Real mainly due to its patchy away form, although the team went some way to correcting that with a 2-0 win at Sevilla.

Pep Guardiola’s side has won 12 and drawn one of 13 home matches this season, scoring 53 goals and conceding just five. On the road they have won seven, drawn five and lost two.

“We are this far behind because up to now we have been slipping up away from home,” fullback Daniel Alves said.

“Getting a balance between home and away games lets you get closer in the battle for the title. At the key part of the season we are starting to get this balance back.”

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