Lewis Holtby starred for Hamburg as they secured a 3-0 away win in the Bundesliga over Borussia Moenchengladbach.
The 24-year-old signed permanently in the summer from Tottenham Hotspur, after spending the season on loan there last year.
Last night he excelled in a defensive midfield holding role, making five tackles and two interceptions.
With one chance created and four dribbles, he was rated by whoscored.com as the best midfielder on the pitch, recording a pass completion rate of 88 per cent.
Big mistake by Mauricio Pochettino not to give him a chance?
Holtby is a versatile player with a big future ahead of him, but was not given time to prove himself by Mauricio Pochettino, despite being the same age as Ryan Mason.
One of the reasons it did not work out at Spurs is that like Gylfi Sigurdsson he wanted to play an attacking role but was unable to dislodge Christian Eriksen from the side.
Yet right now Spurs are light in the defensive midfield holding role, having attempted unsuccessfully to sign Victor Wanyama of Southampton late in the transfer window, as reported SkySports.
Considering Holtby's effective performance in the role last night, playing his part in an important away win, asks the obvious question of whether he could have been important for Tottenham this season.
Spurs did well to offload a number of under performers during the transfer window, but Holtby was not one of them, rather a player who the club under-utilised and should have tried harder to make it work.