He could be seen as somewhat of a forgotten man as far as Chelsea are concerned, but Gael Kakuta seems to have found a place to thrive this season.
Arriving as a highly talented prospect, albeit in a shroud of controversy after Chelsea were accused of poaching Kakuta as a youngster from French side Lens, he's since had to adapt to numerous changes of scenery.
Loan spells in England with Fulham and Bolton, were followed by a return to France and Dijon. Perhaps the most successful spell honing his skills was with Dutch side Vitesse, where he performed well over a season-and-a-half. When his second term was cut short, though, rather than be afforded opportunities with Chelsea, he was promptly shipped straight back out to Italian outfit Lazio in January 2014, though only made two fleeting appearances.
This season, however, an opportunity arose with one of the more modest teams in La Liga, Rayo Vallecano, who were delighted to land his signature on a season-long loan deal. They haven't regretted that move either.
On Saturday it was Kakuta who fired Rayo ahead against visiting Malaga at Vallecas, heading home a sumptuous cross from Alberto Bueno, who himself has been linked with interest from England. A constant threat throughout the encounter, with precise crossing and darting runs either to the byline or into channels, Kakuta proved a real handful for the visiting Málaga defence, helping his side to secure the eventual 1-0 victory.
23-year-old Kakuta has been a key player for Rayo and their manager Paco Jémez, who is a big admirer of the explosive pace, timing of runs and awareness the winger offers his side. Indeed, the young Frenchman has impressed his manager so much he's started all 28 fixtures in La Liga during the current campaign, and has played the whole ninety minutes for all but four of those encounters.
It remains to be seen what further plans Chelsea have in the future for Kakuta, but he's certainly been impressive in La Liga. If the London club opt to sell, there'll certainly be no shortage of interest from clubs here in Spain, depending on the price of course.
That said, this could have been a carefully planned move by Jose Mourinho to test the qualities of Kakuta, in a league the Portuguese coach knows very well, in order to gauge Kakuta's genuine potential to battle for a place in the Chelsea squad next season.