Valverde: Messi’s best quality…

Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde claims Lionel Messi’s best quality is “his constant competitiveness” ahead of Saturday’s clash with Atletico Madrid.

Messi scored a hat-trick against Ecuador on Wednesday to send Argentina to the 2018 World Cup, but Valverde was not surprised by the No 10’s exploits as he had ‘always’ done them.

“Iniesta brings us a lot on and off the pitch,” the Coach said at a Press conference.

“We’re talking about a unique player, like Messi. We’ll see if Messi can rest more as the season progresses. He’s fine and I think it’s right that he keeps playing.

“I want all my players to be at the World Cup. The playoffs would’ve been a problem because we could’ve lost Messi and Mascherano

“Messi’s best quality is his constant competitiveness and sense of responsibility. He wants to play every game and bears the burden of being the best in the world.

“Koke gets the ball to the forwards very well, and that must be taken into account. What would give us calmness at the top? Being seven points and two games clear.

“Griezmann can play for many teams thanks to his quality, but he’s at Atletico and we respect him, just as we like others to respect our players.

“After the international break, we know Atletico’s strength and that helps us in terms of focus. I hope we give a good account of ourselves.

“I guess the Argentines will appreciate what Messi did, which is what he always does here.

“Suarez is feeling good, in perfect condition. He scored two goals for Uruguay the other day and he’s not going to stop.”

Tags Argentina Ernesto Valverde Lionel Messi