Manu Fernandez/Associated Press
Being compared to Real Madrid legend Fernando Hierro is no mean achievement for any player, but to have the accolade bestowed upon you before the age of 21 is something else.
But when Hierro tells the world that Bernabeu defender Raphael Varane is the best defender in the world, as John Baines of Goal.com reported in October, any comparison takes on greater prescience.
The former Spain international was quoted as saying:
There is no central defender in the world like Varane.
For his age, his understanding of the game is amazing.
He has the maturity of somebody who has been playing for 20 years.
However, the France international has found his first-team appearances with Los Blancos limited this season.
Injury notwithstanding, Varane chalked up just 21 appearances in La Liga and the Champions League combined under Carlo Ancelotti last season.
The presence of Pepe has ensured that the young pretender has had to wait for his opportunities, so it is little wonder that his name has cropped up in the transfer gossip columns.
And when you consider that the rumour surfaced in the wake of Real's Champions League triumph last weekend, it is understandable that Varane's name is a hot one right now.
John Cross of the Daily Mirror reported in Tuesday morning's edition that Chelsea are planning an audacious move for Varane to replace PSG-bound David Luiz.
And that is certainly not beyond the realms of possibility.
Jose Mourinho was the manager who brought him to the Bernabeu in the summer of 2011, although Zinedine Zidane claimed the credit at the time, as Salvatore Landolina of Goal.com reported at the time.
As far as men in your corner are concerned, the Mourinho-Zidane pairing is hard to beat for any player, no matter what their age is.
Varane, though, is on a six-year deal at the Bernabeu and Real are unlikely to be looking to offload him any time soon.
At the age of 31, Pepe is not going to go on indefinitely for the Spanish giants and the prospect of a talented youngster such as Varane waiting in the wings is a soothing thought.
But if one man can convince the French youngster to join him, it's Mourinho, the man who gave him his chance at the Bernabeu.
Believability Meter: Medium to High
This has the makings of a solid move for Chelsea. At 21, Varane has the potential to be a star of the future.
Mourinho has the advantage of having worked with the player before during his time in charge at the Bernabeu.
Throw in the fact that the Chelsea manager bought him for Real from Lens in 2011, and all signs point to West London for the defender.