Lionel Messi hat-trick gives Barcelona ideal start

PSV Eindhoven manager Mark van Bommel centre wants to rein in his players ahead of their match in Barcelona. Reuters

PSV Eindhoven manager Mark van Bommel centre wants to rein in his players ahead of their match in Barcelona. Reuters

He'll continue to do this, as he has for a decade plus, and Barcelona will continue winning trophies - they project as the clear favorites to take La Liga, and a wide open Champions League is there for the taking.

"It was hard to make the first goal, in the second half we started well, dominating the game, but at 1-0 there was danger, with the second goal we were calmer". "That's where we need Dembele". This has only just started.

The Dutch team is the 30th different club that the Argentine has scored against, since his debut goal against Panathinaikos in 2005. "Leo put that in the corner but before that things were going well". "This was typical of the way Messi has been playing the last two, three years".

FW Ousmane Dembele, 8 - Gave the ball away a couple of times early on but helped create the opening goal with a high-speed burst down the pitch that nobody else on the team could have managed.

The goal produced a massive roar from the Liverpool fans, and Firmino accepted the plaudits from fans and teammates as he saluted the crowd with a hand over his injured eye. PSG, whose main goal this season is to win the Champions League after repeated failures, next plays Red Star Belgrade, which drew 0-0 with Napoli.

Messi scored three times as Barcelona commenced their Champions League campaign with an emphatic 4-0 victory at home to PSV, with his first goal a spectacular free-kick. After a miserable World Cup trying to retrieve the irretrievable Argentina, Barcelona's now-captain proved his quality again to any doubters that are left.

With this, he overtook Cristiano Ronaldo in terms of most number of hat-tricks.

Even PSV coach Mark van Bommel lauded the five-times world player of the year, saying: "For me he is the best player in the world".

Only when Barca were three ahead was Samuel Umtiti sent off for a second yellow card, and with 10 men, Messi completed his hat-trick for a 4-0 win. It was his eighth in Champions League play, the most ever, and it dispatched PSV Eindhoven in FC Barcelona's first UCL group-stage game.

Barcelona and PSV are in a tough group, with Inter Milan and Tottenham rounding out what many consider to be this season's group of death.

"We can still get better".

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