Sunderland boss Steve Bruce has been stunned by the rapid progress made by Jordan Henderson with the midfielder now being talked about as a potential full England international.
Bruce knew immediately he had a hot property on his hands when he saw the 20-year-old in training following his arrival last summer.
But barely 15 months on, Henderson is being tipped to be included in Fabio Capello's squad for next month's friendly against France and that would cap a rise which has been little short of meteoric.
Asked if he could have imagined that call would come so soon for a player who had spent the last five months of the previous season on loan at Coventry, Bruce said: "You would have to say honestly, no. But I have to tell you, when I walked through the door, more than any other player, he grabbed me - and he grabbed me within two training sessions. I asked, 'Who's that?'.
"To be fair, I had more conversations when I first got the job about Jordan than any other player. He must have done exceedingly well at Coventry, which we know he did.
"We had half the Championship wanting to take him on loan again so I had heard a little bit about him. I had seen him and been recommended him once by my chief scout saying Sunderland had a hell of a player when he was at Coventry. But he grabbed me straight away in the first couple of training sessions and hasn't looked back. He has done fantastically well."