Bundesliga legend Lothar Matthaus has likened Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski to Barcelona megastar Lionel Messi, claiming he holds similar value to the German giants.
The 29-year-old hitman is into his fourth season with the Bavarians and has plundered 119 goals in the German top flight since moving on a free transfer from Borussia Dortmund in 2014.
The Poland international has won the title in each of his previous three seasons having played a huge part in each of those successes and Matthaus, who made just shy of 500 appearances for Bayern, sees something very Messi-esque about the star.
He told bundesliga.com: "Lewy' makes a difference, he cannot be replaced. Robert is an important figure in Munich like Messi is in Barcelona. However, when Messi gets injured, the image of the Catalan game changes completely. Bayern does not have this problem."
In the eyes of Matthaus, Lewandowski holds the same value to Bayern to that of Messi to Barca, and his stats are actually not that far off the world's best player.
Messi has scored 128 in La Liga since Lewandowski signed for Bayern and has hit 31 goals in Europe to the striker's 30.
Matthaus added: "Lewandowski is a key player, but the team is not as set up for him as the Real Madrid game under [Cristiano] Ronaldo or the tactics of PSG under Neymar."
The goal machine is vitally important to Jupp Heynckes' side, and his incredible consistency has prompted other big clubs in Europe such as Chelsea, Juventus and most recently Real Madrid.