The Juventus forward Gonzalo Higuain has said that his teammate Paulo Dybala has what it takes to become just as good as Lionel Messi if he puts in the work.

Dybala, who is in his second season with Juventus, has already been linked with a move to Barcelona and Higuain believes that he could reach the level required to play for them.

Speaking to Mediaset Higuain said, “They are very similar. Messi is better and he shows this day-by-day, but Paulo is still young — he’s only 23 so it all depends on him. He will have to show great mental strength.”

Higuain said that there are a lot of highs and lows ahead of Dybala but if he can keep a level head and not pay too much attention to criticism or praise then he could achieve great things. He added that “to have made it to the very top as soon as possible is an advantage because you learn to mature quickly and then you play like a world class player straight away.”

Last season Higuain set a new scoring record in Serie A with 36 goals for Napoli before joining Juventus in the summer which elevated him into the company of players such as Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Luis Suarez and Robert Lewandowski.

He said that it is the Brazil international Ronaldo who is his all-time favourite player and that he likes “players who entertain” over “those who just score goals.”

Speaking about the early days of his own career Higuain said, “When I joined [Real] I was 18 and I matured a lot there. I had some great teammates: Raul, [Ruud] Van Nistelrooy and Roberto Carlos and they helped me a lot settling in. Raul was already a legend and he had a huge impact on me because he helped me and gave me the opportunity to be his successor.”