Joe Allen admits Luka Modric gave him an international runaround in Croatia, proving he still has a lot to learn.
Liverpool midfielder Allen struggled to get near Modric on Tuesday as Croatia eased to a 2-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Wales.
The Real Madrid playmaker offered a midfield masterclass as he ran the show on a tricky playing surface, with Allen and co unable to get close enough to prevent him pulling the strings.
Allen hopes he will one day be able to dominate games in a similar fashion, but for now is happy to learn from the best in the business - however painful those lessons may be.
"Modric is a great player and you want to test yourself against those types of players," said a man who moved to Anfield in a £13.5million deal over the summer.
"For me personally, it was disappointing because I felt he controlled the game for them and looked comfortable throughout.
"You always want to make it as difficult as possible for your opponents and, if I'm honest, I think my level of performance individually just wasn't quite good enough.
"He is a top, top player, he plays for one of the best clubs in the world and I think in his position he's one of the very best.
"I think it showed that I've probably got quite a lot of work to do if I'm going to get anywhere near his level."