Leo Messi's highlights in Betis v Barca show why opposition fans applauded him

Lionel Messi was majestic against Betis

Lionel Messi was quite superb in Barcelona's 4-1 win over Betis on Sunday night.

The 31-year-old opened the scoring with a quite exquisite free-kick, meaning he has now scored 25 free-kicks since the start of the 2011/12 season.

Luis Suarez then provided a beautiful back-heel to give Messi his second goal of the night just before half-time.

With five minutes to go, Barcelona were 3-1 up and cruising to victory.

But there was still time for Messi to complete his hat-trick as his audacious lob found it's way past Pau Lopez Sabata.

Messi has put in some great performances over the course of his career, but this was up there with the best.

Betis fans even stood up and applauded Messi's third goal, with many even chanting Messi's name.

And his highlights from the game show exactly why the home fans gave him such a reception:

Spectacular.

Of course, most of the attention after the game was on Messi and his performance.

Gerard Pique branded him as 'unique' after the game.

"He's a special footballer," he said, per Marca. "There have been others throughout history, but Leo has been doing this for 14 years.

Lionel Messi v Betis

"He's unique in that there's nobody like him in history."

Messi was asked whether he had scored a better goal than his third against Betis, but the Argentinian instead focused on the team's win.

"I don't know, I was lucky that both of them went in but above all we got the three points," he said, per AS.

"We knew that we had a good opportunity to put a little distance between ourselves and Atlético and we couldn't fail."

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