Brazil star Neymar has revealed his admiration for Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, saying the Argentinean is the best in the world and that it would be a “dream” to play alongside him.

The Santos forward has been gathering headlines of his own over the past year or so, with many even claiming he is the best in the world, but Neymar was adamant as to who that honour belonged to, though he did cite Messi’s Camp Nou colleague Andres Iniesta and Cristiano Ronaldo as being close to him.

“To play alongside Messi would be a dream. Even just training with him would make me very happy,” he is quoted as saying by Goal.com.

“For me, there are three players who are better than the rest: Iniesta, Ronaldo and Messi. But, the best is Messi. There is nobody who can do the things he does.”

Recent reports have suggested Neymar is set to join Messi at Barcelona at some point, but the 20-year-old claimed it was too early for a move to Europe in an interview earlier this week.

The Catalans are unlikely to be the only club interested in the star of Mano Menezes’ Brazil side, as he turned down a move to Chelsea two years ago and it is conceivable that Roman Abramovich could sanction a move to try and bring him to Stamford Bridge – he certainly has the spending power.

However, Neymar’s comments about Messi would suggest his preferred destination would be Barcelona, whose fans will be rubbing their hands together at the prospect of the South American superstars lining up together at Camp Nou.

Neymar was also full of gratitude for Messi praising him recently – the captain of Argentina described his Brazilian counterpart as an “excellent footballer”.

“Can you imagine the best in your profession giving you praise? It made me very happy and I can only thank him for his words,” he added.

Messi and Neymar are set to go head to head in the vote for the 2012 FIFA Ballon d’Or, which is to be awarded at the beginning of next year, but Barcelona’s talisman is the heavy favourite to win the award a fourth time in a row.

Neymar may have to wait for his opportunity to lift the award but he is being primed for greatness by Santos and momentum is building towards him dazzling for the Seleção at the World Cup in 2014 in his home nation.

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