• Liverpool star Diogo Jota has been earning comparisons to Cristiano Ronaldo
  • Portuguese pundit Tom Kundert thinks Jota is still far from Ronaldo's statutory
  • Jota himself hinted that he could be the next Ronaldo

Portuguese pundit Tom Kundert isn’t convinced Diogo Jota can replace Cristiano Ronaldo as Portugal’s most celebrated football star.

Since the start of the English Premier League season, Jota has been on-fire with his goal scoring. Before the International Break, the Liverpool star signing has already scored a sensational hat-trick against Atalanta.

On Sunday, Jota added glitter to his career by setting a new English top-flight goal record in win over Leicester City.

Due to his impressive nose for goals, Jota is now viewed by some as the player who would succeed Ronaldo. However, Kundert is certain the Reds striker is indeed a talented player but still far from filling the shoes of “CR7.”

"Jota came through at Pacos de Ferreira, a club that staying in the top flight is considered a success, and he was superb,” Kundert told the Liverpool Echo on a special Diogo Jota Blood Red podcast . “He really made people sit up and he was only 18 when he had a magnificent season, scoring about 15 goals. ”

"Jota has taken his game to another level at Liverpool and people are excited - it’s a no-brainer that Jota will be a big part of Portugal’s future,” he continued. "(But) I don’t think Jota will be the replacement for Ronaldo--and you can’t say that about Joao Felix. But there is a group now of four or five players who are at the top of their game at Europe’s top clubs.”

At present, there has been an array of Portuguese sensations who present a strong case for becoming the “next Ronaldo.” But for Kundert, none of them has reached that level yet and Portugal is still looking for someone who can continue the superstar’s legacy.

"Jota, Felix, Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes--it’s exciting times for Portugal and they will be contenders for major tournaments," he explained. "There will be a drop-off and the legend remains, but for a new generation of Portugal fans, there needs to be a figurehead. Before Ronaldo, it was Luis Figo. There has been Eusebio in the past. They have to have someone to carry the fight.”

Diogo Jota finishes past Atalanta goalkeeper Marco Sportiello on his way to a hat-trick in Liverpool's 5-0 Champions League win on Tuesday
Diogo Jota moved from Wolves to Liverpool in the 2020 summer transfer window. AFP / MIGUEL MEDINA

Jota’s former manager Jorge Simao, on the other hand, has long been convinced that the 23-year-old has already been following the Ronaldo blueprint.

Surprisingly, Simao revealed that the Liverpool star himself certainly feels the same way too.

“When Jota signed for Liverpool, I sent him a message to congratulate him,” Simao told The Athletic. “He replied, five seconds later, with a link to that old article about him and [Cristiano] Ronaldo.”

“It was the very first thing he sent! He must have had it bookmarked. Incredible! He hadn’t forgotten.”

Cristiano Ronaldo's Juventus won Serie A last year
Cristiano Ronaldo's Juventus won Serie A last year AFP / Marco Bertorello