Everton invested £4 million in Muhamed Besic’s potential over the summer, with the Bosnia-Herzegovina international snapped up from Hungarian side Ferencvaros.
The Toffees were always aware that they were getting an unpolished diamond, with some buffing required to turn him into a top Premier League performer.
Roberto Martinez is confident the 22-year-old has the raw materials, though, required to compete among English football’s elite.
The Goodison Park fan base are also buying into that way of thinking, with Besic having become something of a cult hero as a result of his combative and tough-tackling approach.
He is, however, aware that he must work hard on his game if he is to achieve his target of becoming the ‘perfect player’ before the end of the 2014/15 campaign.
Besic told the Liverpool Echo: “I like tackles. That’s my style of play. I like to tackle and play it easy.
“I am still young and I have to learn because sometimes I make stupid mistakes but I think when I play, in maybe half a year I will be a perfect player.
“I am enjoying it because I come from a small league and now I am on a big stage. So I enjoy every game and always give my best. Sometimes I may not play well but I always give my best.”
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Time is on Besic’s side, as he penned a five-year contract upon his arrival on Merseyside.
Martinez has been careful not to rush him into action and expect too much, too soon from a Premier League rookie.
Injuries to the likes of Gareth Barry and James McCarthy have forced his hand, though, and Besic is now being expected to offer much-needed bite alongside the creative talents of Ross Barkley in the heart of Everton’s midfield.