Southampton hero Brett Ormerod rates Ricki Lambert in the class of Matt Le Tissier.
Lambert is closing in on a century of goals for the club (94 in 165 starts).
"Ten years ago, people wouldn't have believed you if you'd told them the success Rickie would have," Ormerod told the Daily Echo.
"But he always had tremendous ability. Some players mature later than others for loads of reasons - mostly luck.
"I can't remember why he was released but he learnt his trade at Macclesfield and Stockport, got the move to Bristol Rovers and has turned into a top, top player.
"He's continued to develop and has absolutely flourished at Southampton.
"He's far more than a target man, he's the closest thing Southampton have had to another Matt Le Tissier.
"He fully deserves the success he's had, he's still the same Rickie. I was playing Call of Duty on the X Box with him and Richard Chaplow, who I know from my Accy [Accrington Stanley] days, just the other week."