Valverde reserves special praise for Messi after the 3-0 victory of Barcelona on Alaves

  Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde praised the patience of his players when they let their season go to a winning start.

Lionel Messi scored twice as champion Barcelona defeated Alaves 3-0 at the Nou Camp in their opening game of the new season of the La Liga.

Messi, who saw his Argentinian side fail to make an impact on the World Cup in Russia, returned in club action in a determined mood and rattled the crossbar with a free kick of the first half.

The captain of Barcelona, ​​who succeeded the bracelet after Andres Iniesta's departure, finally broke the deadlock when his smart, free kick flew under the wall in 64 minutes.

Substitute Philippe Coutinho added a well-taken late third before another nice bit of Messi's individual skill wrapped around the injury time.

Cited on the official Barcelona website, Valverde applauded his team for their improvements during the game.

"Although we were close to the score, we could feel how hard it was to get in. They defended very well there, they were very compact, we had a bit of a rhythm early, but then we started to get more chances and eventually we opened the score, "he said.

"When Alaves started to open more, we could kill the game.

"Still, the second goal was hard to get, but as the minutes went by, we became better and better."

Messi, the boss, added: "We are so happy to live in the time when Leo Messi plays.

"It is a pleasure to let him play for us, he will never surprise."

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