Barcelona attacker Ansu Fati became the youngest goalscorer in a Clasico in the 21st century after he netted against Real Madrid at Camp Nou.

The Spain international tapped in from close range in the eighth minute after latching onto Jordi Alba's cutback.

His strike cancelled out Federico Valverde's opener, which had come three minutes earlier during a frantic start.

At the age of 17 years and 359 days, Fati is the youngest player to score in a meeting between Barca and Madrid in the 21st century.

It is the latest in a long list of records set by the Barca academy graduate since he made his senior debut in August 2019.

Fati is also the overall youngest goalscorer for Barca and the Spanish national team, as well as being the youngest scorer in Champions League history.

He has established himself as a regular in Barca's frontline this season ahead of Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembele, who both started on the bench against Madrid.

The early equaliser was the 400th goal scored by the Catalan giants against their bitter rivals in all competitions.

Barcelona head coach Ronald Koeman "respects" Gerard Pique's opinion and has backed the defender to do his talking on the pitch in Saturday's clash with Real Madrid.

La Vanguardia published an explosive interview with Pique on the eve of the first Clasico of the season in which the long-serving defender heavily criticised his club.

The 33-year-old hit out at president Josep Maria Bartomeu in particular over his handling of Lionel Messi's contract saga and admitted Barca have gone backwards since 2015.

Pique did reserve some praise for new boss Koeman, however, and the Dutchman insisted he has no problem with the timing of the interview.

"He has been here for many years and I have been here for three months," Koeman said at a pre-match news conference on Friday ahead of the Camp Nou meeting with Madrid.

"He has his opinion and I respect it. He's smart and knows that if he does an interview of this type, tomorrow he will be ready and play well. I respect all opinions if he is involved."

Pique has been named in a 23-man squad that also includes the returning Jordi Alba and misfiring forward Antoine Griezmann, whose role in the side has been questioned.

Griezmann has yet to score, assist or create a single chance for one of his team-mates in LaLiga this term from four starts, but Koeman is expected to stick with the Frenchman.

"Like anyone he is available to play," Koeman said. "It is not good to discuss his role ahead of every game. We have many more players and want everyone at their best level.

"The team is always the most important thing and we choose the best players for each match."

Griezmann's poor return is in stark contrast to Ansu Fati, the teenage attacker having scored four goals in five appearances this term - more than any other Barca player.

Fellow youngster Vinicius Junior has also been in good form, scoring in three of his last four appearances, and Koeman can see both players getting better over time.

"We know that they are two very good players despite their age," he said. 

"They are learning many things and their trajectory is going very fast. For me the age of the player is not important - what matters to me is their performance.

"Ansu Fati will be a star in the future, but he must work and develop. We will support him to be one of the best in the world, and we will do the same with the other youngsters."

Barca, who like Madrid suffered a surprise defeat in their last league outing, are seeking a first Clasico win in three attempts.

The Catalan giants have failed to score in the last two Clasicos and Koeman acknowledged the importance of picking up a positive result this weekend to rebuild confidence.

"It is important, of course," he said. "The players deserve it for the work they are doing every day. They show a lot of ambition and have started playing in another system. 

"They have shown ambition and hunger. A game against Madrid is always something a bit more. If you win a match, everything is easier."

Ronald Koeman will get his first taste of El Clasico from a dugout when Barcelona host Real Madrid on Saturday.

The LaLiga champions head to Camp Nou after a pretty rotten week in which back-to-back home defeats to Cadiz and Shakhtar Donetsk have left fans and pundits alike thoroughly disillusioned with Zinedine Zidane's current approach.

Barca also lost 1-0 in their previous league game, away to Getafe, but a 5-1 thumping of Ferencvaros in the Champions League was a tonic and, in truth, that defeat at Coliseum Alfonso Perez felt more like an aberration during what has mostly been an encouraging start under Koeman.

The Clasico is always the acid test, though – and Barca, barring a dramatic change in system, will line up for this one in a 4-2-3-1 formation, something they have not done for at least the previous 46 meetings.

BREAKING THE WHEEL

Nobody need tell Koeman about Barca's traditional adherence to 4-3-3. He had enough experience as a player for the Netherlands and the Blaugrana to know such a system like the back of his hand, even if Johan Cruyff's peak 'Dream Team' – such as the one that won the 1992 European Cup final through a Koeman extra-time goal – thrived instead in a 3-4-3.

The fact is, though, that Barca have doubled down on 4-3-3 since Frank Rijkaard took charge in 2003. He, Pep Guardiola, Tito Vilanova, Gerardo Martino, Luis Enrique, Ernesto Valverde and, eventually, Quique Setien – all have either stuck religiously to the system or at least made good use of it.

That rings true in the Clasico, too. Since the 2005-06 season, there have been 46 matches between Barca and Madrid in all competitions, and Barca have started in a 4-3-3 in 39 of them. Four games have seen them set up in a 4-4-2, and one each in 3-4-3, 3-5-2 and 4-3-1-2.

It's yielded mixed success, as you might expect. Barca won 17 of those 39 games in 4-3-3 – a 43.6 per cent winning rate – and lost 12. They scored 71 goals and conceded 53.

In 4-4-2, they won twice, drew once and lost once, scoring eight goals and conceding four. The 3-4-3 was, fittingly, a 3-3 LaLiga draw in October 2007; the 4-3-1-2 was that famous 3-2 win for Barca at the Santiago Bernabeu under Luis Enrique in 2017, when Lionel Messi scored his 500th club goal; and the 3-5-2 was used by Valverde when they lost 2-0 in the Supercopa de Espana second leg in the capital three years ago.

Koeman's set-up, then, is a big departure from the norm. But will it work against Madrid?

FATI AND FRENKIE ON FIRE

Koeman explained this month that 4-2-3-1 was preferable because of Barca's lack of wingers. "Looking at the quality that we have, this formation is perfect for the team," he told Barca TV.

Fans may not have warmed to the idea at first, but Koeman's approach makes sense – and there are certain players thriving in this formation.

For one thing, it gets Ansu Fati involved closer to goal. In four league games, the young Spain star has attempted 15 dribbles, created three chances and scored three goals. The freedom to cut inside from the left has also liberated Jordi Alba and Sergino Dest at left-back, each of whom have also created three goalscoring chances. Given Madrid presently have no fully fit right-backs, that should worry Zidane.

Another to benefit is Frenkie de Jong, a player who admitted to underwhelming in his first season after joining from Ajax for an initial €75million. He has performed positively in a central axis, usually alongside Sergio Busquets, asserting himself in games far more even though Barca's average possession figure has dropped to 59.2 per cent, lower than in any of the past 11 seasons.

He, too, has created three goalscoring chances and has a remarkable 100 per cent success rate from 11 attempted dribbles. He has also completed 216 passes, behind only the more possession-focused Gerard Pique (255) and Busquets (261). He is a player with renewed confidence in breaking lines in transition and getting the ball into threatening areas, and Madrid's midfield three will have a real test on their hands to cover the space of Barca's four forwards while keeping De Jong quiet.

And Messi? Koeman said before the Ferencvaros game that his captain's form "could be better", and he had a point – one goal (a penalty) and zero assists from four league games is an unusually modest return. He is also averaging 3.9 shots per game, his lowest rate since 2007-08.

Still, Messi has created more chances (six), attempted more dribbles (19) and more shots (15) than any other Barca player in the league this season, and he may be about to face a Madrid defence without Sergio Ramos.

Ronald Koeman said Barcelona have a great future but called for patience after their 5-1 Champions League rout of Ferencvaros.

Lionel Messi, Ansu Fati, Philippe Coutinho, Pedri and Ousmane Dembele were all on target for Barca, who made a winning start in Group G on Tuesday, while Gerard Pique was sent off in the second half.

Barca are coming off a tumultuous 2019-20 season, which saw the club dethroned by bitter rivals Real Madrid in LaLiga and humiliated 8-2 by Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarter-finals.

The embattled Spanish powerhouse turned to Netherlands boss Koeman and the Dutch head coach has overseen just one loss in five competitive matches this season.

"We play different," Koeman told reporters after Barca became the first team ever to have two goalscorers aged 17 or under in a single Champions League match thanks to Fati and Pedri.

"We have made changes on the team, we have made changes on the squad, we have chosen young people, so we can't expect more from this team right now.

"We're good, this team is gonna have a great future, but it must improve. Playing with young players, different tactics…. Be calm, I ask you to give a margin.

"We are going to improve. We can't demand it in two or three weeks, but you'll see that soon the team will play better, will be more comfortable, but we need time."

Antoine Griezmann was an unused substitute at Camp Nou, where Koeman opted to use Pedri and Dembele off the bench after Trincao started alongside Messi and Fati.

Messi became the first player to score in 16 successive Champions League campaigns after his 27th-minute penalty opened the scoring for Barcelona.

Fati doubled the lead with a volley as he became the first player to have scored two Champions League goals before celebrating his 18th birthday.

On Griezmann's absence, Koeman – whose Barca face Madrid in Saturday's Clasico – added: "We look for the best eleven for each game, today we have opted for Trincao playing wide, and then Ousmane [Dembele] in order to have depth on the wing.

"Let's see Saturday, it will be another game. It's my job to prepare the team and have the best squad for each moment."

Barcelona sensation Ansu Fati said he is continuing to learn from superstar captain Lionel Messi after setting a Champions League record on Tuesday.

It was a record-breaking night as LaLiga giants Barca opened their Group G campaign with a 5-1 rout of Hungarian visitors Ferencvaros at Camp Nou.

Messi became the first player to score in 16 successive Champions League campaigns after his 27th-minute penalty opened the scoring for Barcelona.

Fati doubled the lead with a volley as he became the first player to have scored two Champions League goals before celebrating his 18th birthday.

"Messi is still Messi," Fati told Movistar post-match. "He can score in any action. 

"We are very happy to have him here with us and I continue to learn from him."

"We start with a good victory, we have to continue like that," Fati added. "It's [his goal] thanks to all my team-mates, they make things easy for me. It's a fantastic pass from Frenkie [De Jong] and I just had to push the ball."

Philippe Coutinho, Pedri and Ousmane Dembele were also on target for Barca, while defender Gerard Pique was sent off in the 68th minute.

Barca are the first team ever to have two goalscorers aged 17 or under in a single Champions League match thanks to Fati and Pedri.

"It's good for the team, it means we're good," Fati replied when asked about Barca's attackers scoring goals.

"The more competitive there is between us, the better. We all come out better."

Barca will now turn their attention to Saturday's Clasico showdown against bitter rivals and defending LaLiga champions Real Madrid.

Madrid, who have a game in hand, are third and one point behind Real Sociedad, while Ronald Koeman's Barca are four points off the pace, having only played four matches.

"I approach it with maximum enthusiasm," said Fati. "It's a Clasico, I've always dreamed of competing in it."

Manchester United, Barcelona and Juventus all made winning starts to their Champions League campaigns as the group stage got up and running.

Tuesday's headline fixture saw two heavyweights in a head-to-head Group H clash, as United saw off Paris Saint-Germain 2-1 thanks to Marcus Rashford's late strike. The England forward's last three goals in the competition have all come on the road, with the last two netted at Parc des Princes.

The victory means United, who have also now scored a record nine Champions League own goals thanks to Anthony Martial's mistake, have won 10 consecutive away matches in all competitions for the first time.

Bruno Fernandes opened the scoring with his 11th spot-kick for United. Since 2012-13, PSG have conceded more penalties (18) and more penalty goals (13) in the Champions League than any other side.

Meanwhile, Ronald Koeman became the fifth manager to take charge of at least six teams in the Champions League – after Carlo Ancelotti (eight), Claudio Ranieri, Jose Mourinho and Rafael Benitez (all six) – as his Barca side took on Ferencvaros.

It finished 5-1 to the five-time European champions, with Lionel Messi converting a 27th-minute penalty to become the first player to score in 16 successive Champions League campaigns in the process.

Ansu Fati doubled Barca's advantage before the break, making him the first player to have scored two Champions League goals before turning 18. Philippe Coutinho, Pedri and Ousmane Dembele completed the rout.

Elsewhere in Group G, Juve overcame Dynamo Kiev thanks to Alvaro Morata's maiden Champions League double, while Andrea Pirlo became the third Bianconeri coach to win his first away game in charge in the competition.

Frank Lampard experienced his first 0-0 draw as Chelsea manager in a stalemate with Sevilla.

From players in the top five European leagues, only Tottenham star Harry Kane (eight) has provided more assists this season than Borussia Dortmund's Giovanni Reyna (four), though Erling Haaland's latest effort that came with a little help from his team-mate arrived in a 3-1 defeat to Group F rivals Lazio.

Lionel Messi and Ansu Fati were on target as Barcelona opened their Champions League campaign with a thumping 5-1 win over Ferencvaros at Camp Nou on Tuesday, although Gerard Pique was dismissed for the hosts.

Ronald Koeman's side suffered a surprise 1-0 defeat to Getafe in LaLiga at the weekend and looked shaky in the early stages against their Hungarian opponents, who were making their first appearance in the Champions League group stages for 25 years.

Messi's penalty shortly before the half-hour mark settled any nerves, though, while Fati doubled their advantage in the 42nd minute.

Philippe Coutinho added a third early in the second half before Ihor Kharatin pulled one back for the visitors from the penalty spot after Pique had been dismissed for bringing down Tokmac Nguen inside the area. Barca had the final say, however, substitute Pedri scoring his first goal for the club eight minutes from time and Ousmane Dembele adding a late fifth.

Ferencvaros were far from overawed in the early stages against their illustrious opponents, twice going close to taking the lead inside the opening 20 minutes.

Nguen had a fine strike ruled out for offside before Isael crashed a powerful drive against Neto's crossbar from 10 yards.

They were left to rue those close calls in the 27th minute when Messi powered home from the spot after he had been tripped in the area by Adnan Kovacevic.

It made the Argentina international the first player in Champions League history to score in 16 consecutive seasons.

Fati was denied by the outstretched leg of Denes Dibusz but then got the better of the Ferencvaros goalkeeper three minutes before the interval, steering a volley inside his left-hand post after a sublime looped pass from Frenkie de Jong.

Fati turned provider for Barca's third seven minutes after the restart, Coutinho receiving his impudent back-heeled pass before sending a deflected effort past Dibusz.

Kharatin restored some pride for the visitors 20 minutes from time after Pique clumsily hauled down Nguen as he entered the penalty area following a ball over the top.

Any hopes of a dramatic comeback were extinguished, however, as Pedri turned home from 12 yards and Dembele thundered home from Messi's pass in the final 10 minutes to seal a comfortable three points.

Lionel Messi became the first player to score in 16 successive Champions League campaigns after his penalty opened the scoring for Barcelona against Ferencvaros.

Barca were 2-0 up by the interval at Camp Nou, with Messi scoring from the spot in the 27th minute and Ansu Fati volleying in a second.

Messi's strike means the Argentine superstar has now netted in Europe's elite club competition in 16 consecutive seasons.

No player in Champions League history has scored in more campaigns overall than Barca's number 10, who is level with Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs in that regard.

While Messi may be entering the twilight of his Barca career, one player who is at the other end of the spectrum is 17-year-old Fati.

With his 42nd-minute effort, the Spain international, who enjoyed a brilliant breakthrough season last term, became the first player to have scored two Champions League goals before turning 18.

Fati added an assist shortly after the restart, turning provider for Philippe Coutinho to make it 3-0 to Ronald Koeman's side.

Erling Haaland, Jadon Sancho and Ansu Fati headline the final 20-name shortlist for the 2020 Golden Boy award.

The prize, presented by Italian newspaper Tuttosport and won by Joao Felix last year, is given to the best player aged 21 or under from a top-tier league in Europe.

Haaland is a leading contender for the accolade after scoring 44 goals across all competitions in 2019-20 – 16 of those coming in 18 appearances after a mid-season move from Salzburg to Borussia Dortmund.

Among all Bundesliga players last season to have scored at least 10 goals, only Robert Lewandowski (81.2) had a better minutes-per-goal record than Haaland (81.7).

His Dortmund team-mate Sancho finished the 2019-20 league campaign with 17 goals and 16 assists, making him the first player since Opta began detailed data collection (2004-05) to register at least 15 in both categories in the same Bundesliga campaign.

The England international's prolific campaign saw him become the youngest player (20 years, two months and six days old) in the history of Germany's top flight to reach 30 career goals.

Despite their impressive numbers, Haaland and Sancho face stiff competition from Fati, who became the third-youngest player (16 years, 304 days old) to find the net in LaLiga history and the youngest of all time in the Champions League (17 years, 40 days).

He finished the season with eight goals in all competitions and has continued his rise this term, netting three times in as many LaLiga games and becoming the youngest player to score for Spain.

Alphonso Davies will also be in contention after establishing himself as one of the top left-backs in the game during Bayern Munich's treble-winning season.

The full 20-man shortlist:

Mitchel Bakker (Paris Saint-Germain), Eduardo Camavinga (Rennes), Jonathan David (Lille), Alphonso Davies (Bayern Munich), Sergino Dest (Barcelona), Fabio Silva (Wolves), Ansu Fati (Barcelona), Phil Foden (Manchester City), Ryan Gravenberch (Ajax), Mason Greenwood (Manchester United), Erling Haaland (Borussia Dortmund), Callum Hudson-Odoi (Chelsea), Dejan Kulusevski (Juventus), Rodrygo (Real Madrid), Bukayo Saka (Arsenal), Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund), Dominik Szoboszlai (Salzburg), Sandro Tonali (Milan), Ferran Torres (Manchester City), Vinicius Junior (Real Madrid).

Spain boss Luis Enrique has defended Ansu Fati after he struggled to impact the 1-0 victory over Switzerland in the Nations League.

The 17-year-old Barcelona winger, who is his country's youngest ever goalscorer, played 57 minutes in Madrid before being replaced by Wolves star Adama Traore.

Fati failed to capitalise on two good openings in the match, managing just one shot and creating zero opportunities for team-mates.

He also failed to muster a cross and lost four of his seven duels as Switzerland's 3-5-2 system proved tricky to break down, with Silvan Widmer and Nico Elvedi providing tough opposition down the Spain left.

"Man-marking is always a problem for the forwards, for everyone," Luis Enrique said on Monday as Spain prepare to face Ukraine. 

"Our goal is to create the greatest number of advantages for our attackers. After that, each game is how it is.

"Ansu is 17 years old, but he already knows what he's going to find in matches.

"We have our model because it depends on the work of the whole team. Against Switzerland, it was a difficult game for everyone because of the strong and high pressing from them, but I think we solved things well."

Spain's attack was also frustrated in a 0-0 draw with Portugal last week, but defensively the 2010 world champions have looked impressive.

In a 15-game unbeaten run stretching back to November 2018, La Roja have conceded only six goals and kept nine clean sheets.

Luis Enrique is happy to see the likes of Pau Torres, Eric Garcia and Diego Llorente perform well in a battle for a starting spot and also believes the younger players can help captain Sergio Ramos improve.

"Pau, Eric and Diego have done well, each one contributing in their place and trying to improve," he said.

"They are able to play with someone who is a benchmark, like Ramos, and they feel they can play with him, help him and even correct him. Leaders also know they can learn new things."

Ronald Koeman felt Lionel Messi's angry response to Luis Suarez's Barcelona exit made "sense", but insists the Uruguay striker left of his own accord.

The turbulence at Barca became arguably the biggest saga of the pre-season anywhere in European football, with Messi attempting to force an exit after Suarez had been put up for sale, and Koeman replacing Quique Setien in the wake of their 8-2 Champions League defeat by Bayern Munich.

While Messi ultimately accepted that leaving was an impossibility despite being convinced a get-out clause in his contract was still valid, Suarez was sold to Atletico Madrid for just €6million.

Suarez's exit coincided with his close friend Messi posting an emotional farewell message on his official Instagram account in which he publicly slammed Barca's treatment of the former Liverpool striker.

And although Koeman said the outburst was understandable, he was keen to stress that no one forced Suarez out.

"If you have someone in the locker room whom you and your wife and children also hang out with outside football, then such a reaction makes sense," Koeman told NOS.

"I said that to Messi too: I understand that you are disappointed and think it is a terrible shame that he is leaving, but these are choices of the club.

"In the case of Suarez, it had become very difficult for him to play, and I made that known to him honestly.

"He found that difficult, but I never had any trouble with him at all. He just trained, trained well.

"In the end he made the choice to leave. And I did also say that, if you don't leave, for whatever reason, then you're just one of the group, then you prove me wrong.

"He could have stayed, yes."

Explaining the club's decision to plan for life without Suarez, Koeman put it down to a desire to start a new era and give young players more of an opportunity.

"I'm good with Luis, but the club felt that we had to rejuvenate," he added. "You can see that now in the team.

"Ansu Fati plays, he is 17 years old. We have Pedri, 17 years old, who gets his chances. Ronald Araujo is 21. [Francisco] Trincao comes in a lot and is 20 years old, and we have taken Sergino Dest, who is 19. Those are all players for the future."

As for Messi, Koeman is adamant the six-time Ballon d'Or winner's behaviour has been befitting that of his role as captain since opting to remain at the club.

"After signing here as the coach, I immediately contacted Leo," Koeman continued. "I went to his home and talked to him about his future.

"He was clear about his dissatisfaction. In the end it worked out well and from the moment he indicated [that he is staying], he has done everything I expect from him."

Move over Lionel Messi, there's a new MVP in town at Barcelona.

Ansu Fati, the 17-year-old phenomenon, was named September's player of the month in LaLiga on Saturday after his stellar start to the season.

The announcement was made by league sponsors Santander, who declared on Twitter: "We already have a winner of the #MVP September in @LaLiga.

"The chosen one is @ANSUFATI. CONGRATULATIONS, star!"

Fati only played one LaLiga match in September, as Barcelona began their season later than most due to their Champions League involvement last term.

However, the teenage forward made an instant impact when he scored twice in the first 20 minutes of a 4-0 win over Villarreal at Camp Nou.

He netted again, four days later, on October 1, in a 3-0 victory at Celta Vigo.

Fati has nevertheless been a revelation in recent weeks, becoming Spain's youngest lscorer in history at 17 years and 311 days old when he hit the third goal in a 4-0 win over Ukraine on September 6 in the Nations League.

Where superstar Messi has scored just once in three LaLiga games this season, Fati heads the scoring charts in coach Ronald Koeman's ranks.

Fati has played 203 league minutes so far and gobbled up the one opportunity defined by Opta as a 'big chance', after missing six of seven such openings last season.

Koeman has trusted him with starts in each game, while he only played from the first minute in 11 games during the 2019-20 LaLiga campaign, when he scored seven times.

Ronald Koeman concedes Barcelona's financial situation restricted his movement in the transfer market as deadline day passed without any further incomings at Los Cules.

The likes of Arthur, Ivan Rakitic, Arturo Vidal and Luis Suarez departed Camp Nou during the window, while Barca brought in Miralem Pjanic and Sergino Dest, and youngsters Trincao, Pedri and Matheus Fernandes also signed on.

Lyon forward Memphis Depay was among those linked with a late switch to Barca, the Netherlands international thought to have been keen on a reunion with Koeman.

However, with Barca having announced €97million in losses and a decrease of €203m in revenue – factors blamed on the coronavirus pandemic – no further reinforcements were brought in.

"The squad is okay, I'm happy with the squad I have," Koeman told Barca TV. 

"We have tried to improve the squad and in some positions we could, in some others we couldn't. That was because of the financial situation of the club, so we have to accept it and keep working."

Ansu Fati's early-season performances have been a major plus, with the 17-year-old scoring three goals in as many LaLiga games.

The exciting forward has also made the breakthrough into Spain's full national team and Koeman knows he has a special talent on his hands.

"So far, his performance has been the best possible. We are talking about a 17-year-old player," he added. 

"At that age to play three games in a row at such a high level means he is very good, a great talent. 

"Of course he still has a lot to learn, but he is a boy eager to keep learning, he trains every day to improve, so we are here to help him out. 

"Now he is with the national team. Right now, there is nobody in the world who is 17 years old to play in such a high-level national team as Spain are."

Wolves winger Adama Traore has insisted he is not thinking about a potential return to former club Barcelona despite holding regular talks about the club with Camp Nou prodigy Ansu Fati.

Traore emerged through Barca's famed academy ranks but failed to make the first-team grade and is now excelling at Molineux after spells with Aston Villa and Middlesbrough.

The 24-year-old continued his upward rise by winning his first cap for Spain in Wednesday's stalemate with Portugal, earning praise from boss Luis Enrique after the friendly.

He has been linked with a return to Barcelona in the past but, despite still having close ties to the club, the speedy wide man is only focused on improving his game at Wolves.

"It's not my decision whether I would suit Barcelona. My mentality is to work every day to be better," Traore said at a news conference previewing Saturday's Nations League clash with Switzerland.

Asked about his close friendship with Fati, who set yet another record last month by becoming Spain's youngest ever goalscorer, Traore revealed no topic is off limits between the pair.

"We talk about everything," he said. "Even some more general topics because I have been at the club for many years and so has he.

"We met in the academy and have spoke about things to do with the team, the things that we happened together at Barcelona. We know each other well."

Luis Enrique talked up Traore's incredible physique on the back of the goalless draw in Lisbon, but the Wolves man has reiterated weight lifting is not part of his training programme.

"I don't do weights because my genetics make me gain a lot of muscle," he said. "I just do work to be in the best condition."

Ronald Koeman felt Clement Lenglet was unfortunate to be sent off in Barcelona's 3-0 win at Celta Vigo but was full of praise for the way his side coped with being a man down.

Lenglet was shown a second yellow card late in the first half after referee Carlos del Cerro Grande felt the defender impeded Denis Suarez with his arm.

Barca were one goal up at the time courtesy of Ansu Fati's strike and went on to make it two LaLiga wins out of two, Lucas Olaza scoring an own goal after brilliant work from Lionel Messi and Sergi Roberto adding a third in stoppage time.

Koeman had sympathy for Lenglet, yet felt it was more important to discuss the character shown by the Blaugrana on a wet and windy Thursday at Balaidos.

"You can debate whether it was a yellow or not," the Barca boss is quoted as saying by Marca. "It was a tough punishment. It's difficult being a referee. It's a decision we don't have to discuss.

"It was more important to talk about how to play with a man down than to discuss that.

"I'm very proud of this team in today's match. We worked very well and played with a lot of discipline in the team, with one man down.

"We're doing a job good. These results invite us to think that we're on the right track."

Fati looked sharp after also scoring twice in the 4-0 rout of Villarreal on Sunday, while Messi was outstanding yet again on a day which saw Barca draw Juventus in the group stage of the Champions League.

Koeman said of the attacking duo: "They were very good, like the whole team. Leo worked a lot without the ball."

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