The two will come face to face at San Siro in the Champions League on Wednesday and the Brazilian respects the Barca ace.
"Messi is a unique player," the 22-year-old told the Gazzetta dello Sport. "I still have to grow a lot to one day reach his levels."
In the meantime, the striker is just concentrating on making the difference in this week's Stadio Meazza showdown.
"We will be playing against the best side in the world," the youngster continued.
"It would be great if I could score, but I'd be happy if I make a decisive pass and contribute in some way to an important victory."