Former Barcelona captain Xavi Hernandez believes Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti is at a similar level to him at his peak.
Now playing with Qatari club Al Sadd, the 38-year-old stated the Italian international’s technical ability and coolness on the ball made him the most comparable to Xavi’s former pomp.
“Of all the players in today’s game, Verratti resembles me the most,” Xavi told Radio Monte Carlo, as cited by Marca.
“He is technically excellent and makes the right decisions under pressure…he is very important for his club but it is true that one day I would love to see him play for Barcelona.
“PSG are probably favourites against Real Madrid, especially when you consider the form that both teams are currently in.
“However, Madrid have a winning identity and this is always most clear in the Champions League, where they often excel.
“Neymar will one day win the Ballon d’Or, he is a great person and a natural leader. When Messi or Ronaldo’s form drops, he will be favourite for sure.”