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Feb 28, 2015

Barca hot on Real’s heels after Suarez show at Granada

MADRID (Reuters) – Barcelona cut Real Madrid’s lead at the top of La Liga to one point when in-form forward Luis Suarez played a part in all three of their goals in a scrappy 3-1 victory at Granada on Saturday.

Barca struggled to find their rhythm in the early stages at the Nuevo Los Carmenes stadium but took the lead in the 25th minute when Ivan Rakitic smashed the ball in from close range after Granada defender Cala failed to clear a Suarez centre.

Feb 28, 2015

Soccer-Barca hot on Real’s heels after Suarez show at Granada

MADRID, Feb 28 (Reuters) – Barcelona cut Real Madrid’s lead at the top of La Liga to one point when in-form forward Luis Suarez played a part in all three of their goals in a scrappy 3-1 victory at Granada on Saturday.

Barca struggled to find their rhythm in the early stages at the Nuevo Los Carmenes stadium but took the lead in the 25th minute when Ivan Rakitic smashed the ball in from close range after Granada defender Cala failed to clear a Suarez centre.

Feb 26, 2015

Atletico facing crucial tests of new pedigree

MADRID (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid have four games in the coming weeks that are likely to determine whether they have truly joined Spain’s elite or are in danger of slipping back in the second rank behind powerhouses Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Diego Simeone’s Spanish champions play at Sevilla on Sunday and host Valencia the following week in La Liga, two sides who are keen to show they can also challenge wealthy Real and Barca on a more consistent basis.

Feb 26, 2015

Soccer-Atletico facing crucial tests of new pedigree

MADRID, Feb 26 (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid have four games in the coming weeks that are likely to determine whether they have truly joined Spain’s elite or are in danger of slipping back in the second rank behind powerhouses Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Diego Simeone’s Spanish champions play at Sevilla on Sunday and host Valencia the following week in La Liga, two sides who are keen to show they can also challenge wealthy Real and Barca on a more consistent basis.

Feb 26, 2015

Preview: Villarreal looking to prove credentials at Real

MADRID (Reuters) – Resurgent Villarreal will be looking to prove they can challenge Europe’s elite when they take on leaders Real Madrid in La Liga on Sunday, three days before their King’s Cup semi-final clash at Barcelona.

The team with the canary-yellow strip spent a year in the second division in 2012-13 but have bounced back in impressive style under coach Marcelino and have won praise for their entertaining, attack-minded play.

Feb 26, 2015

Villarreal looking to prove credentials at Real

MADRID (Reuters) – Resurgent Villarreal will be looking to prove they can challenge Europe’s elite when they take on leaders Real Madrid in La Liga on Sunday, three days before their King’s Cup semi-final clash at Barcelona.

The team with the canary-yellow strip spent a year in the second division in 2012-13 but have bounced back in impressive style under coach Marcelino and have won praise for their entertaining, attack-minded play.

Feb 26, 2015

Soccer-Villarreal looking to prove credentials at Real

MADRID, Feb 26 (Reuters) – Resurgent Villarreal will be looking to prove they can challenge Europe’s elite when they take on leaders Real Madrid in La Liga on Sunday, three days before their King’s Cup semi-final clash at Barcelona.

The team with the canary-yellow strip spent a year in the second division in 2012-13 but have bounced back in impressive style under coach Marcelino and have won praise for their entertaining, attack-minded play.

Feb 19, 2015

Messi, Luis Enrique truce on shaky foundations

MADRID (Reuters) – Barcelona forward Lionel Messi and coach Luis Enrique appear to have agreed an uneasy truce but hostilities could break out again if the Argentina forward’s form dips and the club stumbles as the season reaches a crucial stage.

A series of inspirational Messi performances have helped Barca put together a streak of 11 wins in all competitions since a 1-0 La Liga defeat at Real Sociedad on Jan. 4, matching their best run under former coach Pep Guardiola in 2008-09.

Feb 19, 2015

Preview: Suarez stunner could be catalyst for more goals

MADRID (Reuters) – Luis Suarez’s stunning goal last weekend was outshone by the exploits of hat-trick man Lionel Messi but the bicycle kick strike could be just what the Uruguay forward needed after a stuttering start in Spain.

Messi netted a record-equalling 23rd La Liga treble in the 5-0 victory at home to Levante before Suarez came off the bench and acrobatically smashed in what was only his fourth La Liga goal in 14 appearances this term.

Feb 16, 2015

Messi hits record treble, Atletico lose at Celta

MADRID (Reuters) – Lionel Messi marked his 300th La Liga appearance with a record-equalling hat-trick and an assist for Neymar as Barcelona stayed hard on the heels of leaders Real Madrid with a 5-0 romp at home to Levante on Sunday.

While Messi continued to rewrite the record books with another masterclass, third-placed Atletico Madrid’s hopes of a second straight title were dealt a blow when the champions were beaten 2-0 at mid-table Celta Vigo.