Stoichkov believes Messi is already showing the form that will take him to a new level.
Despite Saturday's defeat to Alaves, the Bulgarian told El Mundo Deportivo: "For sure, he will invent something new this year.
"He has a different face since his return from the Copa America. He played an outstanding game the other day with Argentina, he was fantastic during preseason meetings and the Gamper trophy too.
"The team is complete and when it is, Messi is really above all others."
On the Ballon dOr, Stoichkov added: " Messi is ... Messi, Neymar, Suarez are there, as is Cristiano Ronaldo ... It depends on how people will vote."