Luka Jovic (c.) combines the best of Luis Suarez (l.) and Karim Benzema (r.) - and much more besides, according to Omar Mascarell. - © getty
Luka Jovic (c.) combines the best of Luis Suarez (l.) and Karim Benzema (r.) - and much more besides, according to Omar Mascarell. - © getty
bundesliga

"Luka Jovic better than Luis Suarez and Karim Benzema" - Omar Mascarell

Luka Jovic is "like Luis Suarez, but with a lot more quality" and is "stronger in the air" than Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema, says the Eintracht Frankfurt forward’s ex-teammate Omar Mascarell.

Jovic finished joint-third in the Bundesliga’s top goalscorers’ chart for the 2018/19 campaign, netting 17 league goals as Frankfurt grabbed a place in next season’s UEFA Europa League.

The 21-year-old’s eye-catching goal return — that included a five-goal haul against Fortuna Düsseldorf — saw Frankfurt activate the purchase option they had negotiated in Jovic’s loan move from Benfica with the Serbia international penning a permanent deal through to 2023.

Watch: Find out how Luka Jovic scores so many goals

Before his summer 2018 move to Schalke, Mascarell had played alongside Jovic at Frankfurt for the whole of the previous campaign, and the Spanish midfielder liked what he saw.

"I would say he’s like Luis Suarez, but with a lot more quality," Mascarell said when asked by Spanish sports daily AS to compare Jovic to other current players.

When Benzema’s name was mentioned, Mascarell replied: "You can compare them, they hold up the ball well, but I see Jovic as being stronger in the air, he’s very good with his head. He’s practically two-footed, he’s quick, strong. Every ball he gets in the air is a danger for opponents."

Schalke's Mascarell (2nd.r) played with Jovic (c.) for Frankfurt last season, and against him in 2018/19. - imago images / Uwe Kraft

The 2018/19 season was Jovic’s breakthrough as he established himself as a first-team regular under Adi Hütter after a 2017/18 in which he bubbled under the surface of Frankfurt’s run to the DFB Cup, orchestrated by now Bayern boss Niko Kovac.

"He wasn’t the first-choice striker, but you could already see his qualities," said Mascarell, who watched Jovic score eight goals in just nine league starts in his first season in Germany.

"Whenever he got minutes on the pitch, he did well and scored goals. He’s really impressive in the air."