Chelsea midfielder Mason Mount has enjoyed an encouraging debut season in the Premier League.
After excelling under Frank Lampard at Derby County last season, the midfielder returned from his loan spell and has been an integral part of the Blues’ first team, scoring six goals and providing five assists in 29 league games.
And his form at Stamford Bridge has seen the England international tipped to reach the top by several leading figures in the, including Barcelona legend Lionel Messi.
The Argentine forward said: “Having watched him play he has the potential to be one of the best.”
Sky Sports pundit and former Liverpool midfielder concurred with the superstar, hailing Mount as a “star in the making”.
Speaking before Chelsea’s 2-1 win against Arsenal in December, Souness claimed England manager Gareth Southgate should be looking to build his side around the Portsmouth-born star.
“That day Chelsea were almost faultless. The only criticism you have is they didn’t score enough goals.
“They played with real purpose in midfield and the ball was always played forward. I think he [Frank Lampard] has made his mind up that he plays Jorginho or Kovacic.
“I think if you are an England manager you have got to be looking at him very closely. I know he is young. Starting with him, building your midfield around him.
“He silky, sees a great picture, has brilliant technique, looks to be a great type and works his socks off.
“A real team player with having all that ability it is what you want. He is a star in the making.
‘And I would think looking at him and his personality and the way he reacts to things on the field he is not someone who will allow the big hit to arrive on his shoulders. I’m a big fan of his.”
Blues boss Lampard also spoke of how Mount impressed him with his quality, work rate and character right from the very start of the season.
“He’s done a lot,” Lampard said in pre-season. “Coming back here, obviously I worked with him last year, and I’m really happy with how he’s trained and his status within the group.
“The players recognise quality instantly, but they also recognise work rate and character. Mason’s got all of those and he’s given me a problem.
“Ross Barkley’s also had a good pre-season and Ruben Loftus-Cheek will be back later on. It’s good because they’re all adaptable and can play in a variety of positions amongst themselves.
“I couldn’t ask for more from what Mason’s done.”
Arsenal defender David Luiz also had kind words for his former team-mate, predicting an extremely bright future for Mount.