Barcelona legend Xavi has highlighted Toni Kroos as Real Madrid's "engine", adding that he is his successor as the best player of his kind.
Xavi earned his place as a global superstar after emerging from Barca's youth system and become one of the best central midfielders the game has produced, winning eight Liga titles and four Champions League crowns, as well as a World Cup and two European Championships with Spain.
World Cup winner Kroos won his first league crown with Madrid this season to add to his three Bundesliga successes with Bayern Munich, while he could lift the Champions League for the second time when his side meet Juventus in this year's final.
As a key part of Zinedine Zidane's side, the 27-year-old's stature continues to rise and Xavi sees no end to it.
"I think that Kroos is the engine of Real Madrid," the Al Sadd player told Sportbild. "He has a way of playing that reminds me a lot of myself. He is like my successor on the field.
"In the Champions League final, I'm Barcelona and I can't go for Real because if they do well, it means Barcelona are doing poorly.
"I wish Juve luck because of the hard work that they have put in in recent years. They deserve it."
Kroos has scored three times in 29 appearances in the Spanish top flight this term, but only three players - Neymar, Pedro Leon and Jonathan Viera - have created more chances than he has, according to Opta.