Cristiano Ronaldo has told Brazilian channel SporTV that Neymar is a "great player" with the potential to one day become the best in the world.
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Ronaldo has done his chances of retaining the Ballon d'Or trophy no harm in recent weeks with his goals helping Real Madrid to secure a place in the Champions League final, while they remain in contention for the Spanish league title.
Barcelona star Neymar has been making fewer headlines for his efforts on the pitch recently, with injuries hampering a disappointing second half of the season at the Camp Nou, although the Brazil international is set to return from a foot problem in good time for this summer's World Cup on home soil.
Ronaldo said that, although it is taking Neymar a while to show his best at Barcelona, he is sure he will ultimately prove a huge success.
"I see Neymar as a great player," the 29-year-old said. "I believe he has shown in recent times he is a player of the future, with huge potential to improve. His adaptation at Barcelona was not the best -- he had some problems at the start -- but I have no doubt that he has the potential to be one of the best players, or even the best player, in the world."
Asked about this summer's World Cup, Portugal captain Ronaldo said it will be tough to emerge from a group also containing Germany, Ghana and the United States but he is optimistic his nation can make an impression.
"We are not favourites, but we will go and try to enjoy ourselves," he said. "We know we have a difficult group phase, in my opinion the strongest in the World Cup, but we will go step by step. We have an important game against the Germans in the first game, and then we must play Ghana and the United States to get through the group. Then we will see."