Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has explained his comments about Phil Foden being 'the most talented player he has ever seen' in comparison with Lionel Messi.
Foden has had his best season yet for City, helping them win the Premier League, the Carabao Cup and reach the Champions League final.
Many are tipping the England international to go on and become one of the best players in the world.
Back in the summer of 2019, Guardiola appeared to claim that Foden is better than Barcelona legend Messi.
"He has everything to become one of the best players," he said while Foden was sitting alongside him.
"I have said many times in press conferences, but maybe not said it in front of him, Phil is the most, most, most talented player I have ever seen in my career as a manager.
"His only problem is sometimes his manager doesn't put him in the starting XI. Hopefully in the future that can improve."
However, Guardiola has backtracked a little on that claim, admitting that Messi is in fact at the top of the list, though he didn't manage the Argentine until later in his career.
"Well, the best is Messi, first," Guardiola told Rio Ferdinand in an interview for BT Sport.
"Second, I didn't meet Leo Messi at 17-years-old like I met Phil (Foden), and that age, I've never seen a player with this potential.
"But you have to see it on the pitch and on the biggest stages."
Guardiola also praised Foden's positive mindset and ability to forget his mistakes, insisting those sorts of mental qualities can not be overlooked.
"He's comfortable. He loves to play," the Spaniard added. "When this happens, you have to protect him. He's a guy who makes mistakes but he's forgotten (them).
"The most important part for a football player is the head.
"He's forgotten in one instance, one second. He thinks about the next one. The game against Borussia Dortmund at home, he missed three chances.
"Do you know who scored? It was him. I had the feeling, he's 20 years old."
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