Chris Coleman has hailed Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey for his performances in helping Wales through the Euro 2016 group stage.
The 25-year-old netted the crucial opening goal in his side’s final group match against Russia, which Wales won 3-0, but Ramsey has largely abandoned the creative role to focus more on defensive duties.
And, ahead of their last-16 clash with Northern Ireland, Coleman singled out Ramsey for praise, saying: “I think Arsenal probably play slightly differently to us.
“Arsene [Wenger] probably asks different things from his players than I do from mine.
“Having said that, in the last game we were outstanding and created chance after chance. A lot of that was through Aaron.
“The other side of his game is also good for us. Positionally he’s become more disciplined for us.
“When you’ve got someone with that type of energy it can be very difficult to lock him down. You just need him to go and express himself and he’s been doing that.
“He’s been excellent in this tournament, as have all the players. They’ve all been fantastic.”
And while Coleman has been keen not to curb Ramsey’s inventiveness in possession, he revealed he has worked with the Arsenal man on his defensive contributions.
“Rambo, as a player with that imagination, is going to stand out,” Coleman continued. “He’s a player with that imagination and can do something spectacular.
“With his energy levels, he’s a lot more disciplined with us. He’s got a lot better at that.
“You have to let him enjoy himself and then give him a few pointers when he hasn’t got the ball and tell him to do those things. That’s what he’s been doing.”