All Whites midfielder Sarpreet Singh is making the most of his chance with German football giants Bayern Munich, earning praise from coach Niko Kovac after a strong pre-season.
Singh has featured in all of Bayern's pre-season matches, and earned a starting spot in the Audi Cup final against Tottenham, playing the entire 90 minutes before taking a spot-kick in his side's penalty shootout loss.
Singh signed with the 28-time German champions on a three-year deal from the Wellington Phoenix after an outstanding campaign for New Zealand at the U20 FIFA World Cup in Poland.
The plan for Singh was to spend the 2019-20 season with Bayern Munich II, the club's reserve team, but Kovac has been so impressed with the Kiwi's worth ethic, more first-team opportunities might be on the horizon.
"I think that was a really good acquisition," Kovac said. "Singh is someone was originally planned for the second team but what he showed in America and in the two games at the Audi Cup in Munich shows that he is a lot further [along] than some of the other players in the second team.
"Without a doubt, he will get opportunities. It depends on his further progress to play in the first team … but I'm very happy with him, and I'm surprised, I'm positively surprised, and I'm happy about his development.
"With him and Alphonso Davies you can see they are a lot further [along] than the others who are playing in the second team."
Bayern begins their season with the German Super Cup against Borussia Dortmund, before starting their Bundesliga title defence against Hertha Berlin on August 17 (NZ time).