Former Lazio midfielder Stefano Fiore told Tuttomercatoweb that Felipe Anderson resembles a cross between Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar, but has a long way to go to reach the level of the two La Liga stars.
The Brazilian has exploded at the Stadio Olimpico after struggling for minutes in his maiden adventure in the Eternal City last season under Vladimir Petkovic and Edy Reja.
Biancocelesti boss Stefano Pioli found trust in the 21-year-old when it was clear his side needed to be refreshed in attack around December, and has looked a genius for it.
Anderson responded with both vitality and aplomb. In his last 10 Serie A appearances, the young winger has had a hand in an astounding 14 goals – scoring eight times and providing six assists.
Over the same period the Brazil youth international has also completed nearly 50 dribbles and won 20 fouls, his contributions thrusting Lazio into the race for Champions League football.
Calciomercato reported earlier this month that the pair had scouted the in-form South American as he took on Fiorentina. On the day, Anderson tested the goalkeeper four times, forced three opposition fouls and even showed defensive prowess with a trio of interceptions.
Whether either Liverpool or United will ultimately move for the Lazio starlet this summer – or sit patiently as he gains more experience in Italy – remains to be seen.
What is clear, however, is that Anderson’s reputation is enhanced with each passing week at his current clip of production, and plaudits aren’t in short supply.
According to ex-Lazio star and Italy international Fiore, the Brazilian is starting to resemble a hybrid of Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar – high praise indeed.
Fiore told Tuttomercatoweb: “The comparison [with Ronaldo] is tricky right now, perhaps irreverent, but it can be said that the similarities are there.
“Perhaps he [Anderson] has less strength, Cristiano is also more complete – he is also good in the air. But it also appears to me that Felipe Anderson is the best player in Serie A.
“He is a cross between Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar, as a player type. And I mean this as a ‘type’, as both of them are clearly ahead.”
Fiore is wise to clarify his position on the matter, as drawing comparisons for young talents can often be a dangerous game in football.
Anderson looks on target to fulfil his potential if he can continue on the same trajectory, but has miles to go if he is to stand on the same plane as the world’s elite players.
A half-season of incredible output simply isn’t enough to place the Brazilian among the best in the business – only with consistency and sustained success will he be able to gain access to such a prestigious category.