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Lionel Messi hat-trick sends Barcelona waltzing past Manchester City

Pep Guardiola had been asked on Tuesday how he might stop Lionel Messi. The Manchester City manager simply laughed. There is no way to stop one of the all?time greats, as Guardiola himself knows better than most from his four years in charge at Barcelona, and the Argentina international re?emphasised the point to make this a difficult homecoming for his former manager.

Messi’s hat-trick came courtesy of three sumptuous swipes of that left foot and the latest statistic to laud his genius shows that he now has 16 goals in 15 games against English clubs. In truth he has been punishing all-comers for as long as anybody can care to remember. This was the 37th hat-trick of Messi’s career.

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