Neymar cools Messi comparisons
Messi and Wayne Rooney among Brazilian's idols
By Andres Garavaglia. Last Updated: March 10, 2012 5:58pm
Neymar: Has shrugged off comparisons with Lionel Messi
Brazilian forward Neymar has shrugged off comparisons with Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi, insisting the Argentinian is in a class of his own.
While the Barca ace continues to dazzle in Europe, 20-year-old Neymar has been making waves for native club Santos.
The youngster netted an impressive hat-trick against Internacional in the Brazilian league on Friday, three days after Messi bagged a five-goal haul against Bayer Leverkusen in the UEFA Champions League.
But Neymar insists he is a long way off reaching the Argentina international's level.
"Messi is above everyone, there is no use comparing me with him," he said.
"He is the best player in the world and I always get inspired when I watch good football.
"Everyone thinks, if he can do it, so can I - but it's very difficult to do what Messi does.
"We saw Barcelona win with seven goals and Santos tried to do something similar, but we don't have Messi."
Messi is among several high-profile players Neymar admires, while Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney is another favourite.
He said: "As I said, I like to watch good football so I like to watch good players. I like Cristiano Ronaldo, Iniesta, Xavi and Wayne Rooney."