Manchester City staff have been singing the praises of summer signing Matija Nastasic after an impressive start to his Etihad Stadium career.
Citizens’ manager Roberto Mancini signed the 19-year-old from Serie A side Fiorentina in a deal worth £12million, with Serbian flop Stefan Savic going in the other direction.
Nastasic was a relative unknown when he arrived at City, but he has since been putting in some assured performances for the Premier League champions and now looks to be first choice to partner captain Vincent Kompany at the heart of the defence.
His initial performances passed without any great comment, but the air of assuredness he has given off in recent weeks have now led more commenters to praise him.
Among these is Manchester City coach David Platt, who admitted slight surprise at how quickly Nastasic has adapted to the English top flight, but was unreserved in his praise for the young centre-back.
“That is testament to him. He has stepped in. The first couple of games he has had to get used to English football but he has done that very quickly,” the former England international said.
"The real, real good performance - he has had several good ones, but the real one where it might be a bit alien to him - was when we went down to West Ham.
“You knew the ball was coming in, they were hitting the diagonal balls towards Andy Carroll and I thought he acquitted himself exceptionally well.
"You get that (style of play) a lot in the Premier League that you don't get in Serie A and it shows there is an old head on young shoulders to adapt to that.”
Nastasic’s form has been so good, that he has been keeping senior England international Joleon Lescott out of the Manchester City starting XI.
He was remarkably composed in the recent goalless draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and already appears to be building a formidable partnership with Kompany.