Joe Cole: Better than Messi

STEVEN GERRARD reckons his new Liverpool team-mate Joe Cole is even better than Lionel Messi.

Cole, 28, was a bit-part player in England’s World Cup campaign and has been left out of the squad for tonight’s friendly with Hungary.

But Gerrard, who was a key figure in persuading Cole to make the switch from Chelsea this summer, believes the playmaker is as good as anyone in the world when it comes to technical ability.

“Messi can do some amazing things, but anything he can do Joe can do as well, if not better,” he said.

“He used to shock us in training by doing footy tricks with a golf ball that most players can't even do with a football. I really fancy Joe for the [player of the year] award this season.”