George Russell backed to match Michael Schumacher in replacing Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes

Russell can make an impact similar to that of Mika Hakkinen or Michael Schumacher with the whole world watching, says Coulthard.

Hakkinen replaced Michael Andretti at McLaren for the 1993 Portuguese Grand Prix and beat the legendary Ayrton Senna in qualifying.

Similarly, Schumacher qualified in an impressive seventh for the Jordan team on his debut back in 1991.

Coulthard added: “Let’s imagine Mercedes are the fastest car again and they will be happy with one-two which is Valtteri on pole, George second but if George out-qualifies Valtteri then people are going to sit up and take notice in the way Hakkinen, when he was drafted into McLaren in Estoril, in his very first race out-qualified Senna.