Former Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg has claimed Max Verstappen is making "too many mistakes" and must be "perfect" if he is to mount a serious F1 title challenge.
In claiming the 2016 world title, Rosberg is the only driver to have beaten Hamilton across a season in the last seven years.
Ahead of the Portuguese Grand Prix, Verstappen trailed Hamilton by just a single point but after finishing second to the seven-time champion, the Dutchman left the weekend trailing by eight points.
Asked if Red Bull would be satisfied with the result, Rosberg told Sky Sports F1: "I think they will have wanted to win here because they had the fastest car
"If we think about qualifying yesterday, it was Max Verstappen that had the fastest lap, it just got deleted because of a mistake.
“The fastest lap in the race again, Max Verstappen had the fastest lap and it got deleted again because of going off track limits. That’s too many mistakes.”
Rosberg believes the early stages of the season has highlighted to Verstappen the scale of Hamilton's ability in an F1 car, if there was any doubt in his mind.
He added: “What a phenomenal race by Lewis and I’m a bit amused because Max Verstappen is starting to understand better and better how good Lewis Hamilton is.
"He needs to do everything perfect to beat him in the championship and, at the moment, it is two-one to Lewis.”