When Chelsea announced the capture of Marko Marin from Werder Bremen at the start of May, his prospective arrival in west London passed unspectacularly under the radar, such was the quality and calibre of players that the Blues were, and still are, being linked with.
The soap opera surrounding Eden Hazard's on-off transfer understandably garnered the most attention and excitement from the Stamford Bridge faithful, and the fact the club now looks to have followed that up with the addition of Brazilian boy wonder Oscar in a £25million deal from Internacional, means Marin could become a forgotten man, even before a competitive ball has been kicked.
Roberto Di Matteo is also in the market for a right-back and a new striker before the close of the transfer window in August, but if there is one area that Chelsea seem well-stocked ahead of the 2012-13 campaign, it's with nimble, attacking midfield players.
So, where does Marin fit in to these plans? The 23-year-old winger, who can also play in a more central role, made his international debut for Germany as a teenager in 2008, with his impressive early form prompting Bremen to pay Borussia Monchengladbach £7million to sign him the following year.
A quick and enthusiastic dribbler, Marin made two substitute appearances at the 2010 World Cup under Joachim Loew, and appeared to belong alongside the likes of Mesut Ozil, Sami Khedira and Thomas Muller at the heart of the new wave of bright, young German talents.
But, whilst the others have excelled, Marin's career has stalled. He was omitted from the squad for the European Championships in Poland and Ukraine this summer due to a combination of poor form and injury, after missing the second half of last season with a recurring hamstring problem.
In truth, Marin has not played well enough since South Africa, and the similar sum Chelsea paid Bremen to sign him, is proof not only how his progress has flat-lined, but also that the move is something of a gamble. The jury is still out on whether or not he can make the transition from starlet to star.
Critics describe him as a provider of flair without substance, but that has not affected Marin's confidence - he has no doubt about his ability to succeed in the Premier League.
"It wasn't a surprise for me that Chelsea came in for me because all over the years there were a lot of big clubs interested in me," he explained in an interview on the club's pre-season tour of USA. "This time I thought it was the right step to go to England. It was a logical step.
"Tottenham were interested in me in January but I decided early on that I wanted to come to Chelsea. It was not a choice for me. When Chelsea called I was sure I wanted to play there."
In addition to the other new recruits, Marin will face competition for a midfield starting berth in Di Matteo's side from established stars like Frank Lampard, Ramires and Juan Mata. But, the German insists he is not intimidated by the challenge that lies ahead, and made a positive start to his Chelsea career by scoring on his debut in yesterday's 4-2 friendly victory against Seattle Sounders.
"For me it's good to have technically-good players around me who can pass the ball, to have some guys who can give you the ball at the right time," he added. "I know I won't play every game. Nobody last year played every game."
The Premier League has not always proven to be either a popular, or successful stomping ground for German players in years gone by, but Marin is one of a number of recent imports with aspirations to test themselves, and hopefully prosper in England's top-flight.
"I know Lukas Podolski and Per Mertesacker well. It's nice to have some Germans around me. I don't know why there haven't been more Germans coming to England.
"In the last few years, Germans have started to move to other countries. Now there are a lot of good young players who are not afraid of taking the step to move to a different country.
"When Michael Ballack moved to Chelsea [in 2006] everyone in Germany was interested. Ballack was the biggest star in Germany at that time, the captain of the national team. So the Premier League was more in focus than before."
In his first season at the Emirates Stadium, Mertesacker has made a steady, if not superb transition to the Premier League with Arsenal. His compatriot Podolski will, in the anticipated absence of want-away striker Robin van Persie, be looking to hit the ground running with Arsene Wenger's side this year, and Marin will strive to do the same across the capital.
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