Ernesto Valverde says Barcelona La Liga record 'also belongs to Luis Enrique'

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi lifts the ball over Leganes goalkeeper Ivan Cuellar to score his team's third goal. Alex Caparros  Getty Images

Los Pepineros have managed just ten goals in 15 matches on the road this term and are unlikely to add to that at the Camp Nou, where Barcelona have conceded just six times this season.

Barca have now gone 38 top-flight matches without defeat, levelling the previous best mark by Real Sociedad which has stood since 1980.

But when receiving praise for the achievement, the Barcelona manager was quick to show his class and thank his predecessor Luis Enrique, who oversaw seven of the 38 games a year ago.

Having only made his professional debut for Rennes in September 2015, and then spent one season in Germany, Dembele is now gracing the same side as World Cup champions and five time Ballon d'Or victor Messi. Otherwise, this was Barca at their best. But the hosts moved in front in the 27th minute through a trademark Messi free-kick. Five minutes later the Argentine doubled the lead, taking one touch to control a through ball from Philippe Coutinho before delivering a cool low finish. Barcelona eased off in the second half, perhaps with the midweek clash at the Stadio Olimpico on their minds, and Leganes hit back midway through the second half.

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La Liga top scorer Lionel Messi struck a hat-trick for the runaway leaders.

But Messi made the points safe, running onto Ousmane Dembele's ball and lifting it over goalkeeper Ivan Cuellar. "Looking forward to the next matches, the way he played is good news for us".

Ernesto Valverde's men now turn their attention to Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final tie against Roma - where they hold a 4-1 lead - as their pursuit of a treble continues, while 14th-placed Leganes are left to reflect on a 12th consecutive league away game without a victory.

Real Betis climbed up to fifth and edged closer to a return to European football next season by beating Eibar 2-0 at home, while Alaves beat Getafe 2-0.

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