Granada slipped back into the bottom three last weekend as Manucho's second-half strike was enough to condemn them to an eighth defeat in 13 league games.
In the aftermath of that game and others in recent weeks where the Andalusians have played reasonably well without getting the results, Juan Antonio Anquela has demanded his team start winning ugly if need be.
However, injuries are restricting the coach from making too many changes to his side, although Odion Ighalo may finally get a chance from the start after scoring in an ultimately fruitless 2-1 win over Zaragoza in the Copa del Rey in midweek.
Mauricio Pochettino's time at Espanyol finally ran out this week as he was sacked following another home defeat against Getafe last weekend.
In his place comes former Atletico Madrid manager Javier Aguirre, as Espanyol were thrashed 3-0 be Sevilla in the cup on Wednesday for an overall 6-1 aggregate defeat, he was able to see the magnitude of the task that awaits him.
Hector Moreno and Sergio Garcia are still banned following their red cards at Valencia a fortnight ago, but the change of manager may be a blessing for Simao who worked under Aguirre at Atleti and will surely be given more of a chance to shine than he was by Pochettino.
These two sides deserve to be where they are after a host of very poor performances in the first third of the season but it is Granada who have shown more improvement over the past few weeks and, unless Espanyol manage to take advantage of the new manager bounce struggling teams often get, the hosts will be targeting a big three points here.
The key will probably be for Iriney to put the shackles on Joan Verdu who has the focal point of anything good Espanyol have done so far this season, whilst at the other end Youssef El Arabi could take advantage of an Espanyol backline missing the experience and composure of Moreno.
WhoScored.com provides you with unparalleled football statistics, as well as detailed football previews and football rankings from competitions all over the world. Our live, in-depth football statistics from the
Russian Premier League,
Super Lig and
supplies unique and original insights for football fans, sports betting punters, journalists, football managers and players. We also have football tables, live scores, top performing players as calculated with our unique WhoScored.comratings, articles, graphics, rankings and much more.