The match ended 2-1 in favour of Barcelona at Nou Camp but the talking point was the goal and the importance of another milestone from the club’s captain.
Messi scored a spectacular free-kick to give Barcelona the lead in the first half before Jordi Alba restored parity for Athletic Bilbao by diverting into his own net.
Griezmann handed the hosts the maximum points with the winning goal in the second half.
Koeman once again described Messi as the best player in the world following his sublime free-kick and overall impressive performance against Bilbao.
“We’ve known, for quite some time, that he’s the best in the world,” Koeman said when asked about Messi at full time.”He’s done a lot for the club. He’s decisive during games.”He hasn’t been more motivated today [because of the newspaper report].”You have to respect everything he’s done.
“What’s happened has been for bad intentions, to cause harm.”We have to be united and focused. Things that are published have to be put to the side, but it’s tough.
Barcelona are now 10 points behind leaders Atletico Madrid having won eight out of their last 10 Laliga matches.