Kylian Mbappe has suggested that Erling Haaland isn't on the same level as him yet, adding the Borussia Dortmund star need to show a bit more longevity before he is touted as "the next superstar".
Mbappe and Haaland have been touted to butt heads the same way Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have done for years, and with just 18 months separating the duo, they are widely considered to be the pair most likely to take the mantle from the Argentine and the Portuguese.
Paris Saint-Germain star Mbappe hinted that his peer still needs to work a bit more to reach superstar status. The 22-year-old told Esquire: "It is his second year, we are getting to know him. It is the beginning for him. I'm happy for him, for what he's doing.
"I have played up front, I have played on the left and on the right. In all humility, I don't think everyone is capable of changing positions like this every year and maintaining a great performance at the highest level.
“That did not fall from the sky. If I talk about the baggage that they gave me in adolescence, it's all there. I have managed to work on my weak points, but above all to perfect my strengths, because they have always told me that it is through your strengths that you are going to win."
However, he did admit that he isn't on par with Messi and Ronaldo. When asked how he sees himself compared to the iconic duo, Mbappe said: “Everybody knows. If you tell yourself that you will do better than them, it goes beyond ego or determination: it is lack of awareness.
“Those players are incomparable. They have broken all the laws of statistics. They have had ten, fifteen extraordinary years.”
He continued: “You always compare yourself to the best in your sport, just as the baker compares himself to the best bakers around him. Who makes the best croissant, the best pain au chocolat? I watch the games of other great players to see what they do.
“I know how to do this, but can the other do it too? I think other players are watching me too. I think that pushes footballers to elevate their game.”