Liverpool youngster Jon Flanagan has all the tools to emulate Brazil great Cafu, according to Brazil great Cafu.
The World Cup winning captain is famously a fan of the Anfield club and revealed he had great admiration for the youngster given his chance by manager Brendan Rodgers this season. Liverpool fans have given Flanagan nicknames like 'Flanny Alves' or the 'Scouse Cafu' and it turns out his fellow full-back actually agrees.
Cafu was speaking to the official Liverpool television channel when he revealed what he feels are similar attributes in Flanagan to himself. The 21-year-old has become a favourite of the Reds fans this season after getting a regular place in Rodgers' team and his good form was rewarded with a place among the seven reserves for the England World Cup squad.
While he is not exactly the most refined of defenders in the Premier League, Flanagan has endeared the Liverpool faithful to him with a mixture of determination, heart and an incredible work-rate. Cafu believes these are the kind of ingredients needed to become a leading full-back in world football and tipped the Liverpool youth academy product to acheive great things.
"He has speed, strength and determination. He's an athlete who goes after it and never gives it up," said the World Cup legend.
"That's exactly what I used to do; there were no missing chances for me, no tiredness and no being dejected. I see that style in him too. I hope he continues that way and achieves as many trophies as I did.
"I first started hearing about him by watching Premier League matches and observing his performance along with other players.
"I then started seeing some news saying he is the 'Red Cafu'. So there's nothing better than coming to the city and taking a picture with my successor.
"He is a good player; still young and developing, but already gaining recognition at Liverpool and he might even have an opportunity with the English national team. He'll be a great English player in the future."