Erik Lamela is flourishing under Roma's Zdenek Zeman who gives the playmaker the freedom to express his undoubted ability.
The 20-year-old Argentine looks a different player than when he arrived from River Plate last year for a whopping €12 million. Partly it's Zeman system that allows him to go forward at will, it's partly the departure of Bojan for Milan which gives him more wiggle room and partly due to maturity.
While last year Lamela seemed at times a little too hungry in front of goal this year he's shown he can both lead from the front and get goals or create chances for his team mates with some razor sharp through balls. The kid has a wide range of skills that mark him out as one for the future. He can pick out a team mate from anywhere on the pitch with beautifully weighted passes, he can dribble and has pace to burn, can shoot off either foot and is strong in the air.
MIlan's El Sharaawy seems to have taken up residency on the cover of Gazzetta dello Sport this season but Lamela is making a name for himself in the nation's capital with 8 goals this season already, which counts for over 30% of the team's total.
Not only that, his form seems to have a knock on effect and those around him, including Francesco Totti. The kid is only 20, but he has already been called a future captain of the club.
Lamela is central to Roma's attack this year and at e time of writing the player if facing a three-week lay off with ligament damage,, you would hope that for such a young player, a period on the sidelines does not alter his form and when he comes back he'll pick up where he left off. January is looming and he will definitely be one many clubs will covet.
Manchester United are rumoured to be lining up a €16 million bid for the youngster after having a €14.7 million bid rejected in the summer. If indeed the Argentine were allowed to leave 'i Luppi' they would certainly want to make a tidy profit on the player. That could put him out of reach of Alex Ferguson's club and into the realm the other Manchester Club, who have lot more lucre sloshing around and (for now) an Italian manager who like to keep tabs on what's happening in Serie A.