Neymar uncomfortable with Messi and Ronaldo comparisons
Neymar said he does not feel comfortable being mentioned in the same breath as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as he prepares to captain Brazil.
Barcelona star Messi and Real Madrid's Ronaldo have dominated football, winning the Ballon d'Or the past nine times between them but Neymar is closing the gap.
Neymar, who finished third for the top gong in 2015, has been tipped to win the next Ballon d'Or as some of his peers see him surpassing the iconic duo but the 25-year-old is just focused on bettering himself.
"This is one thing that I don't feel comfortable to talking about. I really don't like it," said Neymar, who will captain Brazil against Paraguay in CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying on Tuesday with the South American giants seven points clear atop the standings.
"They [Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi] are two great players that in the last 10 years maintain the high level. They are two great players that I admire a lot and one of them I work with him at my side every day.
"He is the best player that I've ever played and I've been learning from him. I don't know if it is or isn't the right time, I just know that I want to be better than myself every day. Yesterday I went well and today I want to be even better and so on. I want to overcome myself every day and I do not want to be better than anyone, I just want to get better and better."
While Neymar was reluctant to discuss comparisons, he was happy to speak about his relationship with Barca team-mate Messi.
Neymar and Messi help form the iconic 'MSN' alongside Luis Suarez at Barca and the former - who took his tally to 51 international goals in 76 games with his sublime chip in last week's 4-1 rout of Uruguay - said he is flying high thanks to advise passed down from the five-time Ballon d'Or winner.
"When the Ballon d'Or gets to you, do everything calmly. Everything is going to fall into place. Play how you play, Do what you know how to do, and then everything will turn out okay," Neymar added.
"When Messi told me this, it was something that made me feel good. Because you have this fear to speak about it with your idol, and to speak to a guy that you admire, and when he lets you feel free, it relaxes you a bit. You feel like yourself on the pitch and during training. And this is what happened to me.
"We have a great relationship. We're friends. And this helps a lot on the pitch when you have love for each other, to help each other, to make a pass, when he scores a goal. So we are really happy. It's not just him, it's [Luis] Suarez as well who is a great player, a legend, so we get on really well there.
"One helps the other in all moments. And I'm really happy with the moment that I'm living, that's the best moment in my career, in my opinion, physically, in everything. Not just in numbers themselves, in playing football. I'm really happy that I'm maintaining all these games and playing really well and I'm helping my team-mates, which is the most important."