Paulo Dybala continues to distance himself from comparisons between himself and fellow Argentina striker Lionel Messi after making a brilliant start to 2017-18.
The Juventus forward hit a hat-trick against Sassuolo on Sunday – his second treble of the season – to take his tally to eight from just four Serie A games, while Messi has five in four LaLiga matches for Barcelona.
Dybala has long been rumoured to be a Barca target, either as a partner for Messi or as his successor, although Juve’s general manager Giuseppe Marotta said no bids arrived for the 23-year-old during the transfer window.
While Dybala’s trophy cabinet is already filling up – he has two Serie A titles and a pair of Coppa Italia winners’ medals – he insisted he is not similar to Messi.
“Lionel Messi’s hat-tricks? As I said yesterday, Messi has his story, his goals – and I have mine,” Dybala told JTV.
“We’re two different players. He’s won a lot – and I hope to do that too.”
— OptaPaolo (@OptaPaolo) September 18, 2017
Former Italy international Antonio Cassano is the latest famous footballer to draw comparisons between Dybala and Messi, although he says the former is not yet on the same level as the Barcelona star.
“For me, Messi is the greatest player in history and you cannot compare him to anyone – maybe a little to Cristiano Ronaldo,” Cassano told Italia 1.
“Dybala is a great player but is incomparable to Messi. For me, Dybala resembles Montella. He has great technique, is strong, smart and has so many goals, as did Vincenzo. Montella scored more than 150 goals and was an extraordinary player.”