“i-am-similar-to-messi”-–-arsenal-22-year-old-compares-himself-to-lionel-messi

Arsenal midfielder Fabio Vieira has drawn comparisons in his playing style to Lionel Messi whilst also admitting Cristiano Ronaldo is a player he looked up to growing up.

The 22-year-old signed for the Gunners in the summer transfer window and has impressed when on the pitch this season, however, injuries have seen his playing minutes reduced.

Vieira has likened his style of play to the Argentinian great but admits Ronaldo’s hard work and dedication has been an inspiration to him.

The Portuguese creative midfielder has only started once in the Premier League this season but proved his worth as he scored a screamer against Brentford.

Speaking to the club website, Vieira said: “The two biggest influences for me are Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

“Ronaldo not because he is Portuguese, but he is really someone who really inspires others with his work ethic, how he had to leave his family and his comfort zone to sign for Sporting, and for him to build the career that he has built inspires everyone.

“Messi is more to do with my style of play. I am similar to Messi and I appreciate the way that he plays,” he added.

Vieira celebrates his goal at Brentford (Image: Alamy)Continuing his praise for the Manchester United striker, he explained what makes Ronaldo stand out.

“I met him with the national team as we would both be at the gym, and again recently in our game at Manchester United. He would always provide support and give advice to young players.”

Vieira is yet to make an appearance for Portugal’s national team at senior level and therefore is unlikely to be included in the World Cup squad.

That could be good news for Arsenal fans as he fully focus on his fitness ahead of the Premier League returning to action on Boxing Day.