Arsene Wenger has lavished praise on Mesut Ozil ahead of Arsenal's crunch clash against Manchester City, describing him as an "unbelievable player".
The German playmaker struggled to make an impact in his first two seasons with the Gunners as the physicality of English football appeared to affect his style of play.
Indeed, one report earlier this week suggested Ozil was ready to call time on his Premier League career in the summer, instructing his agent to scout for offers from abroad. Oh, how things have changed.
SUBMIT AN ARTICLE
Apply to become a GMS writer by signing up and submitting a 250 word test article: http://gms.to/haveyoursay5
He is now one of the league's most effective players and amongst the favourites to win the PFA Player of the Year award. He is now more likely to sign a contract extension than hand in a transfer request.
13 assists in the first half of the campaign has put him well on track to break the Premier League record, which is currently held by Thierry Henry, who accumulated 20 in the 2002/03 campaign.
Wenger believes he has a player of genuine quality on his hands but has tried to remind people that Ozil is not just a passer, reminding people of a trait that most people take for granted.
The trait everyone forgets
"I think he has become an absolutely unbelievable player,'' he told reporters.
"Ozil is the main provider in our team and in the league. He has 13 assists in the league. Players who can make you score are very difficult to find and have something special on the vision front and on the technical quality.
"That is what Mesut is about. But he is also about, and people forget this many times, in his way an exceptional fighter. He runs much more and covers the distances during the game.
"He has added runs into the box now. You watch how many times he's in the box compared to what he did before."
What is he talking about?
Wenger is referring to the fact that, despite looking rather nonchalant – sometimes uninterested – on the football pitch, Ozil is actually working harder than most, even Alexis Sanchez.
In an analysis by the BBC last month, it was uncovered that Ozil had covered an incredibly impressive 10.21km a match on average since the start of the season – the fourth highest in the entire squad – behind midfield machine Aaron Ramsey and full-backs Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms