'The next Claude Makelele' - It's quite a tag to be placed on a young midfielder, but one Nampalys Mendy earned and appeared to relish in at Monaco last season.
With his first team place under threat at Monaco due to their injection of cash and new arrivals, Mendy sought to leave on a Bosman rather than risk sitting on the bench.
After having a number of offers for his services, including one from Manchester United, the 21-year-old elected to sign for Ligue One side Nice, completing the transfer officially today with his contract expired.
He had hinted at his decision in mid-June, and it was unofficially completed last week, with Mendy speaking about his decision to join them ahead of Manchester United.
He said: "I had other offers, but I did not want to rush things. I want, with my agent and my family, a well established career.
"I want to play and continue to grow. Everything is clear in my head. I really enjoyed the approach of the club. The President's speech, the one of the coach, they tipped the balance. They came to Me. From there, my decision was made.
"Claude Puel likes to advance the players and especially to trust young people. I'm sure I will progress with him and get my chance on the field."
It's likely a wise decision for Mendy, who could easily have got swept up in his own hype and held out for a bigger move.
But moving from Monaco to Manchester United would have presented the same problems, with the midfielder leaving one club where he would struggle for a regular starting spot for another.
He appears to have his head in the right place and is advised well. If he continues his progression at Nice then there is no reason why he cannot become a United player in the future, and arrive at the club more confident and a more complete player, with a better chance of making a success of it.
image: © Gordon Flood