Cafu has tipped Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold to win the Ballon d'Or.
The Brazilian legend, who won two World Cups, two Copas America and a Champions League during his playing days, is widely regarded as one of the best right-backs of all time.
Alexander-Arnold is enjoying a magnificent season in the same position as Cafu, with his Liverpool team now 25 points clear at the top of the Premier League table.
And the former Roma and Milan star believes the England international should be a contender to win the sport's most presitigious individual award in the future.
“I think Alexander-Arnold is one of the best in the world, no doubt about it,” he told the Daily Mirror. “He’s a great player – and I would say he has the same characteristics as I did.
“He has got big potential. He is strong and skilful, he really takes the game forward and he’s a player who sets up goals for Liverpool.
“I would say he’s got a Brazilian instinct in the way he plays. My advice for him is simple: just keep doing what you have been doing for the last few years.
“Alexander-Arnold shouldn’t change his way of playing. Even if he makes mistakes, he should carry on doing what he’s doing.
“I think he has what it takes to become a Ballon d’Or winner. We have to change this paradigm where the Ballon d’Or is only won by attackers and strikers. People have to see that defenders are just as important as attackers.”
Some have tipped Alexander-Arnold to be deployed in midfielder in future, but Cafu believes that is not necessary.
“The role of full-back suits him better and I think he now has to get even better at doing what he already knows how to do,” he added.
“He has to play like one of the great full-backs, adapt to the position, become the best full-back in the world and then maybe there could be some sort of adaptation in terms of midfield.
“But, for now at least, he has to be the best full-back he can be.”
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