Joe Allen has thanked two of his former Liverpool teammates for being instrumental in his improvement at Stoke City.
Allen left Liverpool after four years at the club in the summer, and moved to Stoke for £13million.
The 26-year-old is flourishing in a new role with the Potters, and has been their best player so far this season.
Whereas Allen was often employed in a more defensive central-midfield role at Anfield, he is playing closer to the striker in an advanced position under Mark Hughes at Stoke.
The change has paid off, as he is the club’s current top goalscorer (four) and leading assist-provider (two) after ten games.
Allen credits learning from Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey on the international scene with Wales, as well as Philippe Coutinho and Adam Lallana at Liverpool, for his improvement.
“With Wales you’ve got the likes of Gaz and Aaron and there is so much you can learn from them, but also the players I was fortunate enough to play with at Liverpool,” he said.
“Players like Coutinho and Lallana have played in a similar sort of role to the one I’m playing now – you try to pick up a thing or two from them and that’s what I’ve tried to do.
“I enjoyed my time at Liverpool and learned so much but it was time to move on,” he added.
“There is so much quality in a team like that and you have to find a new challenge.
“I was excited about coming to a club like Stoke and staking a claim for a place but I was confident I had a lot to bring to this team and I could be an important player for them.
“I think that makes all the difference to you when you’re maybe given a bit more responsibility and licence to express yourself a bit more.”