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Barcelona can’t live without Messi

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Lionel Messi’s hat-trick inspired Barcelona to a 4-1 victory over Celta de Vigo and ended a tumultuous week on a high at Camp Nou.

Ernesto Valverde admitted Barcelona cannot help but depend on Lionel Messi after the talismanic forward scored a hat-trick to inspire a 4-1 LaLiga victory over Celta Vigo.

Messi’s treble came at the end of a week that began with a 3-1 defeat at Levante and was not helped by a goalless draw at home against Slavia Prague in the Champions League.

Barcelona were short of their best against struggling Celta at Camp Nou but Messi, who had scored six goals in his previous six games, converted a penalty and two free-kicks to all but carry his side to victory on Saturday.

Speaking to reporters after the game, head coach Valverde underlined the Argentina international’s importance, telling reporters: “It’s impossible not to depend on Messi. That’s how it works. He lights up everything. Today we were fluent and he scored three times. It is an advantage that we have, that our opponents fear and that is fine. When we win, we all win. Those who play are many, besides Leo. Everyone does their job.”

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