Neymar not yet near Messi, says former coach

Rio de Janeiro: Neymar`s former coach Muricy Ramalho believes the Brazil striker could not yet be compared to new Barcelona teammate Lionel Messi.

The 57-year-old, sacked as coach of Brazilian top-flight club Santos in June, said Monday that Neymar needed to shine consistently in Europe before being compared to the four-time Ballon d`Or winner, reports Xinhua.

"Messi is number one," Ramalho said. "Neymar will improve at Barcelona, but he has a long way to go to get to where Messi is."

Ramalho rejected suggestions from Barcelona legend Johan Cruyff that the pair will not be compatible on the pitch.

"I`m sure they will work well together, there won`t be any problems. Neymar is a good kid and he has a lot of respect for Messi."

Neymar, who arrived in Barcelona on Sunday following his 57 million-euro transfer from Santos, is set to make his debut for the Catalan club against Polish side Lechia Gdansk on Tuesday.


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