Trent Alexander-Arnold is more Cafu than Gary Neville, says Rio Ferdinand, with the Liverpool defender considered to be the top pick for England from a group of talented right-backs.
The Three Lions are well stocked when it comes to players to fill that particular post.
Manchester City star Kyle Walker was the favoured option for a while, but Alexander-Arnold’s emergence has seen him rise to the fore.
Chelsea academy graduate Reece James is being tipped for big things, along with Manchester United’s £50 million ($58m) asset Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
Former Red Devils star Ferdinand concedes that Alexander-Arnold owns bragging rights at present, with the Liverpool youngster earning comparisons to legendary Brazilian World Cup winner Cafu.
Ferdinand told a Q&A session on Instagram: “Trent Alexander, I saw him against Atletico Madrid at Anfield. If any kid right-back wants to watch a player in today’s modern game play right-back, get that 45-minute clip.
“The way he controlled the game from right-back, the last person I’ve seen do something like that is maybe Cafu.
“He played every pass in the book; outside of the boot, cross-field fade, sprayed it far and wide across the pitch, whipped it behind the defence. He done everything.
“Trent is an absolute mad footballer, I don’t care what anyone says, he plays for Liverpool and I don’t care, the kid can play.”
Ferdinand added: “As good a passer about, he’s up there, you talk about the [Kevin] De Bruynes of this world, I’m not going too far or overcooking it to say that Trent Alexander is in around them boys when talking about top passers, and he’s at right-back by the way. Unheard of.
“You weren’t seeing Gary Neville pass the ball like that, as good as Neville was he couldn’t pass the ball like Trent Alexander.”
Alexander-Arnold is considered to embody the new breed of full-back, with the game having come a long way since Neville was starring for United and England.
Defenders are now required to contribute at both ends of the field, with Ferdinand admitting that Liverpool possess the perfect option for Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate.
He added after being quizzed on whether he would take Alexander-Arnold or Wan-Bissaka: “I don’t know. Right now it has to be Trent, because he’s experienced, he’s played in two Champions League finals, won one, was in a team that should’ve won the league and has been consistent.”