Thiago wants to retain title

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Thiago Alcantara insists that Barcelona can still catch Real Madrid in the race for the La Liga title, after the leaders dropped four points in the space of a week.

Speaking to the club's official website, he explained: "Hope is the last thing that dies, we just have to keep hoping."

Barca have won 8 games on the bounce to keep pressure on Jose Mourinho's side, who have drawn 1-1 with both Villarreal and Malaga in their last two outings.

Los Blancos were pegged back by late goals against Malaga at the Bernabeu on Sunday, before conceding away to Villarreal on Wednesday.

Thiago accepts that the title race is out of their hands, but wants to continue their fine recent run of form.

"[We are] only thinking about our game," he continued. "We have 10 games left and we have to win the maximum number of points possible."

Winning the remaining 10 league games will be made easier with the current form shown by Lionel Messi. The Argentine became Barcelona's all time top scorer on Wednesday night, after scoring an impressive hat-trick in a 5-3 victory against Grenada.

"He's a player who has made history, is making history and will come to make history," Thiago admired. "Messi is unique."

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