Milan legend Paolo Maldini believes Lionel Messi should win the Ballon d'Or every year and feels Gerard Pique is the best defender in the world.
Interviewed in L'Equipe, the 41-year-old was particularly expansive about his views on football a year after his retirement from the professional game.
"When I see Messi play, in my opinion, he should win the Ballon d'Or every year. He is an unbelievable player.
"I like Pique a lot. He has class. He knows how to defend and also how to score. He is perfect in a duo with Carles Puyol.
"Alessandro Nesta remains one of the strongest defenders. Milan's Thiago Silva can also become a super champion."
Asked for his opinion of Milan this season, Maldini said: "I think that it's a competitive team for Serie A.
"They still lack something in the Champions League. We saw that when Milan played in Madrid against Real.
"For example, I believe that it would be difficult to qualify if they drew Barca or Chelsea.
"Milan have recently shown an intensity in their play. It's credit to the Coach, Massimiliano Allegri," he concluded.