Sergio Perez believes former team-mate Kamui Kobayashi has a future in Formula One, saying he'll be "back for next year."
The former Sauber team-mates had two contrasting fortunes at the end of last season as Perez landed a prestigious McLaren seat while Kobayashi was left without a race-seat for this year's Championship.
The Japanese attempted to raise funds to ensure his future but despite his best efforts will be sidelined for this season.
Perez, though, reckons it won't be long before the 26-year-old returns to the fold.
"He is a great driver, a great guy and somebody that can do a very good job for a team," he told Autosport.
"So I think in a way I feel a bit sorry but I think he will be back for next year.
"I am sure with his speed he can find a good seat and hopefully we can have him back next year."