Ferdinand backs Mbappe to dethrone Messi and Ronaldo after PSG hat-trick

Rio Ferdinand has backed Kylian Mbappe to "take the crown" from Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo as the world's best player.

The 22-year-old put in one of the best performances ever to be seen from a visiting player against Barcelona on Tuesday night.

His hat-trick saw Paris St-Germain leave Spain with a 4-1 win, who know all about comebacks in the Champions League.

This was the first time Mbappe had faced Barcelona in his career but they will be praying it is the last after a jaw-dropping display.

And the Frenchman, despite his young age, has won a long list of trophies – including the World Cup with France at the age of 19.

His goal record is sublime, scoring 90 in 107 games for PSG.

It has drawn comparisons to Messi and Ronaldo, who only started registering similar goalscoring numbers much later in their careers.

And now 33 and 36 respectively, the two footballing legends are surely in the twilights of their playing times.

The pair have been at the top of the game for many years, winning 11 Ballon d'Ors between them.

But sights are already being set over who will succeed them as the best player in the world – and Ferdinand believes there is no debate over who will take the throne.

When asked by BT Sport presenter Jake Humphrey about his performance against Barcelona, the ex-Manchester United defender said: "This guy is the guy who is going to take over the throne from Messi and Ronaldo when they're done with it.

"He's gone and given a statement. He's said 'This is men now. I'm the man for this big stage'."

Further pressed on his competition, Ferdinand added: "Mbappe is on his own.

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  • "People forget he's 22 years old, given he's won the World Cup, what he's done in French league, in the Champions League he's been immense.

    "I just feel he's the guy now who's going to take that throne, take the crown and be there.

    "He's standing alone at the moment and it's for everybody to catch up with him."

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