Barcelona 5 Espanyol 0 - The Thoughts of Valverde

Suarez 'It is a privilege to play with Lionel Messi'

Messi set Barcelona on their way with the opening goal after 26 minutes, although looked to have been offside.

Lionel Messi scored his 38th career hat trick as a Barcelona player, as Barca continued their ideal start with a derby win over Espanyol.

It only took 10 minutes for Messi to bag his second, thanks to an assist from Jordi Alba.

With both title rivals Real Madrid and Atletico having dropped points with draws earlier in the day, Barcelona were looking to strike an early blow at the top of the table.

Pique made it 4-0 with a header three minutes to the end of the match after outjumping Mario Hermoso and beating goalkeeper Pau Lopez.

It was a 42nd career hat-trick for Messi, 38 of which have come for Barcelona, and his boss could not help but sing his praises following the Camp Nou rout.

Villarreal had lost its first two games and was yet to score a goal, while Real Betis has now lost two of its first three matches.

The Argentine has created 8 chances for his teammates so far this season, with Barcelona now top of the league table.

"Despite the result, it wasn't easy".

'It does not mean anything, but being ahead is always good'.

And Valverde is likely to be a relieved man when the 30-year-old formally commits his future to the Blaugrana.

"It's great that all the transfers are out of the way and now we can concentrate on the team we have, I'm very happy with it", Valverde added.

"It is not he was not quite on the ball (during his first sessions with us), but he needed some time to adapt to the circumstances, to know his team-mates and understand the way we play".

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