Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde has once again claimed that the club's talismanic forward Lionel Messi is an 'extraterrestrial' following his performance in the team's 1-0 El Clásico win over Real Madrid on Saturday.
The Argentine ace was targeted by opposition players throughout the ninety minutes, with Sergio Ramos miraculously escaping a sending off after elbowing Messi in the face. The Barça ace overcame a groin injury to help his side secure the precious three points against their rivals, which saw them move seven points clear at the top of La Liga.
Despite Messi taking several knocks during the game, Valverde insisted his star forward suffered no injury problems, likening him to an out-of-this-world being.
Valverde said: "Messi is fine, he has had a great game and made a great effort. He is extraterrestrial in a way, because every time he takes the ball something extraordinary happens."
The 31-year-old has once again excelled this season, and has scored 25 league goals and provided 11 assists in just 24 appearances. The club look set to win their fourth league title in as many years, and could complete a famous treble if they can also win the Copa del Rey and Champions League.
Discussing the title race in more detail, Valverde said: "There is a world ahead, Real Madrid are capable of winning many matches in a row, but there is also Atletico. We respect our opponents just as they respect us and it is absurd to start thinking about the league when there are so many games left.
"Last year we had more distance in the league and they (Real Madrid) were European champions, they are a candidate to make history in any capacity."