Barcelona FC stunned at home by Malaga; Lionel Messi, Luis Enrique row under spotlight

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Barcelona | Updated: February 21, 2015 11:20:27 PM

A lacklustre Barcelona FC squandered the chance to go top of La Liga after crashing to a shock 1-0 home defeat by Malaga...

Barcelona FC, Barcelona, Barcelona vs Malaga, Lionel Messi, Lionel Messi Barcelona, Lionel Messi Luis EnriqueBarcelona FC’s Lionel Messi, from Argentina, fights for the ball during a Spanish La Liga soccer match against Malaga at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, Saturday, Feb. 21, 2015. (AP)

A lacklustre Barcelona FC squandered the chance to go top of La Liga after crashing to a shock 1-0 home defeat by Malaga on Saturday – the ongoing row over tactics between star forward Lionel Messi and coach Luis Enrique, which gt ignited afresh this week has not helped matters.

The stage was set for the Catalan side to move two points ahead of Real Madrid, who face Elche on Sunday, but they lacked the slick link-up play that had brought them 11 wins a row.

Seventh-placed Malaga took a surprise lead after Dani Alves tried to nonchalantly side-foot volley a back-pass but Juanmi nipped in before the ball reached Claudio Bravo and he rounded the keeper before slotting into an empty net after seven minutes.

Lionel Messi had scored 12 goals in the previous eight games but he was unable to provide the spark as Barcelona dominated the possession but could not find a way past a steadfast Malaga defence.

Barca remained a point off Real at the top while later on Saturday third-placed Atletico Madrid, seven points off the pace, are at home to Almeria and Valencia, three points behind them, are away at Cordoba.

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