Amid the hubbub surrounding the recent praise directed towards Liverpool full-back Jon Flanagan from Brazilian legend Cafu, fellow Reds defender Glen Johnson would have been an interested spectator.

Flanagan's breakthrough campaign brought plaudits from Brendan Rodgers, teammates, fans and pundits across the country - but, through the power of social media, reached even further.

Having nicknamed the 21-year-old 'Scouse Cafu', supporters took to Twitter to lobby the real Cafu to watch their young hero in action, and promptly received assurances that the two-time World Cup winner would do so.

The story reached a remarkable conclusion when Cafu visited Merseyside earlier this month, meeting Flanagan and the squad before journeying to Anfield to cast an eye over proceedings when Newcastle United were beaten 2-1.

Now, as he prepares for a trip to South America and participation at the World Cup with England, Johnson has revealed the depth of his own appreciation and respect for the former captain of the Brazil national team.

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"You love to watch all the attacking players but Cafu, who played in the same position, was probably the best right-back there has ever been," said the Liverpool No.2.

"It was the way he carried himself - brilliant going forward, good on the ball and could defend very well. He had a bit of swagger."

It is a style of play that Johnson dreams of emulating across Brazil this summer, as one of five Reds representatives in Roy Hodgson's 23-man selection for the tournament.

He continued: "It's always been a big part of my game, to attack when I can. Hopefully that will continue in Brazil.

"Roy encourages the full-backs to get forward. We've got to be as dangerous as we possibly can when we have the ball."