Barca in shock loss as Koeman sees red

·2-min read

Barcelona have missed the chance to move top of La Liga after suffering a shock 2-1 loss to Granada at the Camp Nou which saw their coach Ronald Koeman sent off.

Lionel Messi's 23rd-minute goal appeared to have set Barca on course for a fifth straight home win, a result which would have been good enough to see them leapfrog both rivals Real Madrid and long-time leaders Atletico Madrid at the summit.

However, Granada, who had failed to even manage a draw in any of their previous 25 league visits to the home of their Catalan opponents, turned the game around to further change the outlook in the title race.

Darwin Machis equalised before Barca boss Ronald Koeman was shown a red card for complaining to the match officials, meaning the Dutchman had to watch on from the stands as Jorge Molina was afforded time and space to head in a 79th-minute winner.

With five matches now left, Barcelona stay third in the table on 71 points, the same as second-placed Real, while Atletico are still two points clear.

"We are upset," Barcelona defender Jordi Alba admitted afterwards.

"In two chances they scored two goals. We should have scored again to seal the match. Now we don't depend on ourselves anymore. We have to win the final five matches and see what happens.

"It was a golden opportunity to take the lead after everything that we have gone through this season - but we let it slip away."

The dramatic turnaround for Granada had never appeared on the cards, yet Barcelona allowed their opponents to score with their only two attempts on target to cause a huge upset.

Messi had broken the deadlock after linking up with Antoine Griezmann, the Frenchman timing his delayed return pass perfectly to allow his teammate to fizz a low, left-footed shot beyond goalkeeper Aaron Escandell and into the far corner of the net.

It was Messi's 26th league goal to increase his lead at the top of the scoring charts. He has five more than Madrid's Karim Benzema and six more than Villarreal's Gerard Moreno.

However, Messi was not quite so clinical with another one-on-one opportunity later in the first half and Griezmann himself failed to capitalise when presented with a clear sight of goal soon after the break, firing well wide with his right foot.

Sergi Roberto also sent a volley off target as Barca struggled to make their dominance tell - and Granada made them pay to clinch a result that will undoubtedly be celebrated in the Spanish capital.

Oscar Mingueza's failure to cut out a through ball allowed Machis to run clear and slot the ball beyond the advancing Marc-Andre ter Stegen, while Barca's goalkeeper had no chance when Molina ghosted into the penalty area to convert Adrian Marin's cross.