Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde was in awe of his talisman Lionel Messi after the Argentine grabbed a brace in the 3-0 win against Alaves.
Messi scored an audacious second-half free-kick for the opener, and Barca’s 6,000th La Liga goal, at the Camp Nou on Saturday before rounding up the scoring in injury-time.
“With Messi, you can expect absolutely anything,” Valverde said. “He sees things that others don’t see on the pitch.
“Sometimes we get too used to seeing it, he does things like he did today and we want him to pull a rabbit of the hat every time.
“He’s a genius, and we’re lucky to be able to see him play every day.”
Messi was left out of Argentina’s squad for the upcoming friendlies following reports that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner asked to be excused from the four games.
He was unable to prevent a shambolic Argentina side from being knocked out of the World Cup in the last 16 stage in a 4-3 defeat to eventual winners France.