Robbie Kruse insists his move to Germany from Melbourne Victory in July 2011 has helped make him become a much better player.
The 24-year old Australian international joined Fortuna Dusseldorf over 18 months ago and admits the shift has made him turn into much more of a professional who works hard on all aspects of his game following a tumultuous beginning to his A-League career.
"I always thought I had a lot of talent, and probably I relied on that a bit too much,” he told Fox Sports.
“Moving to Germany, it's opened my eyes to how hard you have to work. It's the little things that make a difference, so I work really hard at training.
"The Germans are really strict on their training methods, there are no short cuts and mentally it's tough too. It's helped maximise what talent I've got and improve all the time.
"I've seen what I can do now, and want to keep pushing myself in the hope that I can move up to better and better teams.
"It's a wonderful place to live, Dusseldorf is a beautiful city with plenty to do. The fans are great and there's not a lot my girlfriend and I have to complain about.
"I've come a long way but I wouldn't change anything, because I learnt a lot along the way. What I went through made me realise I couldn't jeopardise my football now.”