Sergio Aguero has backed himself to become one of the best players in the world but says, for now, that title belongs to Lionel Messi.
The Manchester City striker has been on fire this season and so far netted 16 times in all competitions.
His compatriot and international team mate Messi has so far had an indifferent season by his own high standards and has seen his undisputed crown as the world's best player come under attack.
Messi has won four Ballon d'Or titles in a row and has been widely considered the world's best player over that time.
But Arch-rival Cristiano Ronaldo looks set to win the Ballon d'Or this year as Messi has struggled with injury throughout the last 12 months. A defiant Aguero disagrees, and says the Barcelona star is still number one.
"Messi is a very important person to me," Aguero told BBC Match of the Day Magazine.
"Lionel is the best footballer in the world, but to me we are friends first, always. We started playing together when we were just 17 years old.
"He was always going to be the best, always.
Aguero has also stated his ambition to climb aside Messi to the top of world football insisting he can become one of the best players in the world - better than Ronaldo, Franck Ribery and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
He does admit, however, that he doesn't expect to become a better player than Messi.
"He’s the number one and maybe I can be number two," he continued. "Not yet though, I’m doing OK but I have to keep training hard and playing well."