Geoffrey Kondogbia’s brother claims the Inter Milan midfielder can consider himself to be among the world’s best, with only Manchester United’s Paul Pogba ahead of him.
The France international has not enjoyed the best of times at the San Siro, having been frozen out by former boss Frank de Boer.
He has returned to the fold under Stefano Pioli and started to show signs of rediscovering the form that made him such a sought-after talent at Monaco.
His older sibling Evans, who plies his trade in Serie D, believes the 23-year-old is now on a par with Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos and Barcelona’s Sergio Busquets when it comes to holding playmakers.
He concedes that Pogba is the finest performer on the planet at present in that position, but believes the Red Devils star is a different kind of player to his fellow countryman.
Evans Kondogbia told So Foot: “Comparisons with Pogba? They are two different players, but I couldn’t call all the newspapers to explain football to them.
“I’ve seen them say that he’s done poorly at Inter, yet I’ve read his statistics on dribbling, successful passes and recovered balls...
“Pogba is the best in the world in his position, Geoffrey comes after him, alongside Toni Kroos and Sergio Busquets.
“They are guys who make their teams play, win back many balls but don’t score much.”
He added on the testing times his brother has endured in Italy: “Criticism? It doesn’t break him down. Geoffrey is a guy who doesn’t go out, he trains well and eats properly.
“His relationship with De Boer? When he was experiencing that situation with Frank de Boer, I asked him what had happened and he replied, ‘nothing, he’s a good coach, I just didn’t re-enter his plans’.
“He was really serene and so was I because I know that he’s a world-class player. My only concern with him is injuries.
“When things weren’t going well for him at Inter, three great coaches called me.
“Geoffrey has great mental strength and impresses me.”
Having made only nine appearances by the turn of the calendar year, Kondogbia has already taken in six outings in 2017, helping Inter to collect four victories.