Brazil legend Ronaldo: Neymar needs European move to reach Messi's level

The former Barcelona man believes that his compatriot is on the fast track to superstardom, but feels that a spell in one of the game's strongest leagues would serve him well
Brazil legend Ronaldo feels that Neymar will have to move to Europe if he wants to claim Lionel Messi's title as the best player in the world.

The Selecao starlet is currently regarded as one of the most exciting attacking talents in the game, but there is a debate raging in his homeland over whether the forward needs to test himself in La Liga, Serie A or the English Premier League in order to realise his full potential.

Ronaldo is in no doubt that Neymar is destined to do great things no matter where he plies his trade, but he does feel that joining a club in one of Europe's biggest leagues would bring the very best out of the 20-year-old.

"Messi is better than all the rest," the World Cup winner told El Mercurio. "Neymar is on the right track, but he still needs to find that extra bit of quality and to play well in Europe for several seasons."

Ronaldo also had some words of encouragement for Barcelona winger Alexis Sanchez, who arrived from Udinese last summer but had a stop-start first season at Camp Nou.

"The advice I would give to Alexis is just to continue what he's doing," the former Blaugrana striker explained. "He will triumph in Barcelona with this desire that he has.

"He is a very interesting player because in addition to being fast, he also has quite a good strike on goal. I am confident that he will be a very successful footballer.

"I think he's a very good player and I'm sure that having got through his first year, he will have developed a lot in such a top league."

Ronaldo spent a season in Catalunya before leaving for Inter in 1997, but he returned to La Liga five years later with Real Madrid.