Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi scores a goal during the Spanish Liga football match Barcelona vs Espanyol at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on September 9, 2017. / AFP / LLUIS GENE
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A 5-0 derby win, an assist for 105 million euro ($126 million) purchase Ousmane Dembele on his debut and a four-point La Liga lead over Real Madrid ought to have brought some relief to Barcelona's beleaguered board.The five-time World Player of the Year's hat-trick over the weekend took his tally for the season already to six goals.The board's decision to repeatedly attack and even sue Neymar for breach of contract has also backfired.The ink on a club statement outlining their reasons for taking the Brazilian to court had not dried by the time a number of Barca's leading players including Messi and Suarez posted pictures online of them embracing their old teammate.The open conflict between the players and board was most clearly evidenced when Gerard Pique revealed the players knew of Neymar's intentions to leave as far back as Messi's wedding on June 30 .
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