Most of his Barcelona teammates are away on international duty, but Lionel Messi is taking advantage of not having to jet across continents by knuckling down and working hard to be ready when the club season restarts. 

After a disappointing 2018 FIFA World Cup, where he scored only once as Argentina crashed out in the last-16 at the hands of eventual winners France.

However, as has been the trend for the past decade or so, Argentina’s loss has been Barcelona’s gain as the 31-year-old has begun the 2018/19 campaign in sensational form.

In just two UEFA Champions League games, Messi’s already scored five goals while he’s found the back of the net six times in eight La Liga matches.

Widely regarded as the finest footballer ever, the diminutive Argentine has also chipped in with four assists to make it a memorable few months after a summer of heartbreak.

Speculation continues to mount whether the forward will retire from international football for good, as he missed Argentina’s friendlies in September and was not in the squad for the current international break as well.

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Argentinians may not like it, but it appears the extended rest is doing Messi good as he racked up the goals in Barcelona training on Wednesday:

After their disastrous performance at the World Cup, La Albiceleste seem to be in the process of rebuilding and will face the likes of Iraq (October 11) and Brazil (October 16) in the next week.

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And while Messi has been on target for Barcelona this season, the team haven’t exactly been firing on all cylinders as they find themselves in third place after eight games played in the La Liga rankings.