Valverde: Messi is the best player there is and there ever will be

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The five-time Ballon d'Or winner sparkled against Real Betis and was lauded by his manager afterwards

Lionel Messi is the "best player there is and there ever will be", according to Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde.

Five-time Ballon d'Or winner Messi scored a brace in Barcelona's 5-0 rout of Real Betis in LaLiga action on Sunday.

Messi took his tally to 19 league goals for the season, while Luis Suarez also netted twice after Ivan Rakitic's opener.

"You have to enjoy him," Valverde said of Messi. "We have been able to live his era.

"I have suffered because of him and I know what that is like. Now I can enjoy it.

"It is an event to watch him every day. He is the best player there is and there ever will be."

The demolition in Seville saw Barca move 11 points clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid, who were held to a 1-1 draw by Girona.

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Defending champion Real Madrid are 19 points adrift in fourth position with a game in hand.

"For us it won't be a boring league," Valverde told reporters. "We will continue trying to win our matches, without speculating about the future.

"There are 18 games left and that is a lot. But, every game we win will be a very big step."

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