Justin Bieber 'Deserves' A VMA, Selena Gomez Says

'He works harder than a lot of people I know,' she says of Best New Artist nominee and pal.

[artist id="3187077"]Justin Bieber[/artist] is in for the fight of his short career at the MTV Video Music Awards. The "Baby" singer will have to fend off Ke$ha ("Tik Tok"), Jason Derülo ("In My Head"), Nicki Minaj (for her Sean Garrett collabo "Massive Attack") and indie supergroup Broken Bells ("The Ghost Inside") for the [article id="1647411"]Best New Artist Moonman[/article] at the VMAs on Sunday at 9 p.m. ET/PT.

And if Bieber is looking for a little support between now and then, he should look no further than fellow superstar and [article id="1644487"]pal Selena Gomez[/article]. "I think he deserves it!" she told MTV News on Thursday (September 9) in L.A., not far from the Nokia Theatre, where the show is set to take place. "I think he's worked really hard. I think he works harder than a lot of people I know, so he deserves it."

Whether or not he wins the award, his fans will also get the chance to see him perform. It's just [article id="1647308"]another milestone Bieber[/article] has reached since he presented at the VMAs only a year ago. But Gomez was quick to point out that Bieber isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

"I think just the fact that he's 16 and you're gonna see him onstage with all these other artists that have been around, like, much longer than he's been alive, it's gonna be really cool to see him next to these people that have been idols and icons in the music world," she said.

The 27th annual MTV Video Music Awards will be broadcast live from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday. The party starts with MTV News' VMA Pre-Show at 8 p.m., followed by the main event at 9 p.m. ET/PT.