Messi was at his sublime best in Barca's 5-0 victory at home against Espanyol on Saturday and scored his 38th hat-trick for the Blaugrana.
With a squad that looks weaker than last season and most importantly, weaker than what Real Madrid have to offer, this season was always going to be about Messi, first and foremost.
Messi then doubled the hosts advantage some 10 minutes later, as he slid-in Jordi Alba's smart cut-back.
"The idea is to give Dembele minutes, we have a lot of hopes for him and this game was a first step", the Barcelona coach said.
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Madrid could not manage more than a 1-1 draw against Levante, being held to its second consecutive draw at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium.
Zinedine Zidane's men were held by Valencia before the worldwide break and Lucas Vazquez's first-half response was only enough for another tie upon the resumption of the league. Diego Simeone's team has played three straight away games before being able to inaugurate its Wanda Metropolitano Stadium on Saturday against Malaga.
Athletic Club Bilbao moved into a privileged position into the table with a 2-0 win over a tough to beat Girona.
Barcelona is the only other team not to have conceded after three rounds.
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Maxi Gomez scored a first-half victor in Vigo.
Barca received a massive slice of fortune early on when the linesman failed to spot Messi had strayed offside from Rakitic's pass before the Barca forward danced inside Mario Hermoso and slammed his finish into the roof of the goal.
"'I am happy for Leo who scored three goals and is extraordinary".
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