Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde praised Lionel Messi for settling his side down after a nervy start against Manchester United and inspiring the Catalans to a 3-0 victory to reach the Champions League quarterfinals.
Ernesto Valverde confirmed that Lionel Messi will be assessed by Barcelona's medical staff after taking a knock in the 2-2 draw against Valencia, bringing his status for their midweek Copa del Rey clash against Real Madrid into question.
Lionel Messi insisted his fifth-place finish in last Monday’s Ballon d’Or awards was not a motivating factor behind his sensational performance in Barcelona’s 4-0 thrashing of local rival Espanyol in La Liga on Saturday.
Barcelona lifted the Spanish Super Cup for a record extending 13th time by coming from behind to beat Sevilla 2-1 on Sunday thanks to a stunning strike from France winger Ousmane Dembele and a penalty save in stoppage time from Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
After scoring one of the goals of the tournament and upstaging Lionel Messi by leading his team to the top of its group, Croatia captain Luka Modric hopes to fulfil a dream that began when he watched his nation record a best ever World Cup showing.