Brazilian legend Rivaldo has revealed his admiration for Everton star James Rodriguez, despite his recent struggles at Goodison Park.
The Colombian star is in something of a low point of his career on Merseyside, having found himself out of the picture under new manager Rafa Benitez so far this season.
The midfielder is currently on a run of four months without playing an official game after finishing last season early and missing the Copa America due to a lack of fitness.
He’s yet to feature under Benitez either, with the pair having a frosty relationship after their spell together at Real Madrid.
It’s also felt he doesn’t fit in under the Spaniard, whose current system doesn’t have space for a luxury player like Rodriguez.
That can always change, of course, and Rivaldo is hoping that will be the case, admitting his admiration for the 30-year-old.
“James is a player I admire a lot; he even has many of the characteristics I had as a player,” Colombian newspaper El Espectador report him saying.
“For that reason, he has all the conditions to return. I hope he returns to the highest level and can achieve it at Everton or any other club and also with the colours of the Colombian national team.
“James is a great player, of that I have no doubt, he has already played in World Cups, and that is not easy. I have a lot of respect for him, and I hope he shines again very soon.”