Once regarded as the tearaway Manchester United gave up on, Ravel Morrison is now beginning to flourish at West Ham United, according to his Hammers team mate James Tomkins.
Rated as one of the best prospects to emerge from Manchester United's academy in recent years, the 20-year-old left Old Trafford after a string of disciplinary issues that exasperated his coaches to move to Upton Park in January 2012.
Following a loan spell at Birmingham City last season, Morrison returned to West Ham and enjoyed a sublime pre-season before making his long awaited first team debut for the Hammers in the club's 2-1 win over Cheltenham in their Capital One Cup fixture on Wednesday evening.
The former Old Trafford prospect has continued to make eye catching strides, scoring his sides second in a commanding and mature performance that impressed captain for the night Tomkins, who believes the youngster is now ready to make his mark in Sam Allardyce's first team.
"We've always known Ravel had the talent but after the loan spell at Birmingham you can see he has matured a lot," Tomkins told the Evening Standard.
"If he continues the way he is I am sure he will go on from strength to strength. His technical ability is second to none. He's a real talent.
"I am sure we will help him if he needs it but to be fair to him he's gone to Birmingham and improved himself. He's matured, he's got some first team football under his belt and he seems to have come back a different guy.
"The dressing room here is good and he's fitted in. If he continues to play like that he will certainly get some game time in this season.
"Going out on loan was a big benefit for me as well. I went to Derby and there was nothing better than playing first team football every week. That experience of playing in a tough league like the Championship helped me mature a great deal and it seems to have done the same with Ravel.
"Like myself now, he needs more minutes under his belt and I am sure we'll both be pressing (for a place.)"
Should Allardyce choose to deploy Morrison in a more advanced role, the youngster may find first team opportunities slightly easier to come by after Ricardo Vaz Te handed in a transfer request.
The 26-year-old, who helped the Hammers find their way back to the Premier League after joining in January 2012, has aired his frustration due a lack of first team opportunities at Upton Park, with reports suggesting Allardyce is willing to listen to offers for him.
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