Liverpool icon agrees with Lionel Messi over 'world's best' Premier League star

Lionel Messi
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images)

Liverpool legend Javier Mascherano has echoed Lionel Messi's high praise for Cristian Romero, hailing the Tottenham defender as potentially the "world's best".

Since his £42million switch to Spurs in 2021, Argentina's Cristian Romero has been turning heads with his solid performances, not just at the club level but also on the international stage. His contributions were pivotal in Argentina's Copa America triumph in 2021 and their subsequent World Cup victory.

Lionel Messi, an eight-time Ballon d'Or winner, didn't mince words when he lauded Romero last year after a World Cup qualifier against Ecuador, saying: "For me, he is the best defender in the world right now. Amazing performance tonight, man of the match."

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Now, as Romero continues to shine in the latest Copa America, another Argentine icon, former Liverpool and Barcelona enforcer Mascherano, has joined the chorus of acclaim for the center-back.

Mascherano, currently managing Argentina's U23s, remarked: "Cuti Romero is among the best centre-backs in the world, if he's not the best already. We don't know what his ceiling is.

"He has demonstrated it throughout the entire season at Tottenham. He has been a cornerstone player for the team, incredibly important, and the Tottenham coach has repeatedly praised him in big matches.

"I believe he is at an incredible level, a player with impressive abilities who continues to grow and improve. The level he is reaching is impressive."

Romero, who has been a part of the Tottenham squad for three seasons, was crowned Serie A's Best Defender in 2020/21. Under Ange Postecoglou's management, he has become an indispensable asset to Spurs, thanks to his aggressive tackling, robustness and smooth passing skills, having only sat out five league matches last season.

With a record of 18 Premier League clean sheets during his time at Tottenham, Romero is eager to secure another Copa America winners' medal before he makes his way back to England this summer.