Sevilla returned to winning ways with a 2-0 victory over Granada at the Ramón Sánchez-Pizjuán on Friday night.
Paulo Ganso made his first appearance since January 4 and scored either side of half time to secure a vital three points in the hunt for third place in La Liga.
The Brazilian was a surprise inclusion to the starting line-up as Jorge Sampaoli made two changes to the side held at Mestalla, with Stevan Jovetic also coming into the side.
And it was the two inclusions who combined to hand Sevilla an early lead as Jovetic’s good work on the byline afforded Ganso the time to pick a spot and fire home from six yards with just four minutes on the clock.
Tony Adams’ Granada were faced with a barrage thereafter with Pablo Sarabia testing ´keeper Guillermo Ochoa with a free kick that whistled just wide of the post on 13 minutes.
Sevilla’s dominance grew and Joaquín Correa was the next to threaten when his header rifled just over the crossbar in front of the Gol Norte end, whose noise added to an electric atmosphere from the 31,074 in attendance at the Sánchez-Pizjuán.
Sevilla enjoyed 70% of the possession in the first half and right-back Mariano was in on the action on 35 minutes when his effort flashed across the face of goal, before fellow defender Nico Pareja saw a free kick from close range fly agonisingly wide.
But Ganso’s electric performance was not just confined to the first half as he bagged a second just after the interval.
Jovetic once again held up the ball well on the byline and found Correa whose clever pass found Ganso who slotted past the ‘keeper to double the lead on 46 minutes.
Sevilla’s dominance continued and had it not been for Ochoa the visitors would have travelled back to Los Cármenes after a heavier defeat.
A fizzing shot from Ganso almost secured his hat trick but the Mexican stopper, on loan from Malaga, continued to impress with the first of a string of saves in the second half to keep the score respectable.
Granada’s centre forward Ezequiel Ponce saw his 79th minute effort go close to pegging one back, but his curling strike beat the post as well as Sergio Rico as Sevilla saw out the last ten minutes to record a second win in three games.
SEVILLA FC: Sergio Rico, Mariano, Pareja (Mercado, 82′), Lenglet, Escudero, N’Zonzi, Iborra, Sarabia, Ganso (Franco Vázquez, 80′), Correa and Jovetic (Ben Yedder, 80′).
GRANADA CF: Ochoa; Vezo, Lombán, Saunier (Hongla, 4′), Gastón Silva (Isaac Cuenca, 21′), Agbo, Khrin, Pereyra, Héctor (Samper, 72′), Mhedi Carcela and Ezequiel Ponce.
GOALS: 1-0, 3′: Ganso. 2-0, 46′: Ganso.
REFEREE: Suárez, Canary Islander. Yellow cards for Andreas Pereira, ‘Tucu’ Correa and Samper.