Why Hibs ace Scott Allan is turning into the complete midfield maestro
Hibs' playmaker has added goals to his game this season
Scott Allan has been the star summer signing at Easter Road - that has not been a surprise to Hibs fans.
There was real excitement over the midfielder's return to the club for a third spell when it was announced he had signed a pre-contract agreement back in January with just six months to run on his Celtic contract.
Having won the Ladbrokes Championship player of the year in 2014/2015 in his first spell at Hibs, before returning on loan under Neil Lennon two seasons back to help the club qualify for Europe, there was a real expectation.
The Easter Road support knew he would add creativity and ingenuity to the midfield. His standing among the support was heard, loud and clear, when he was substituted during a 2-2 draw with St Johnstone back in August, former boss Paul Heckingbottom suffering the wrath of the fans.
No player in the league has made more than Allan's 34 'smart passes', according to Wyscout, 11 more than Motherwell's Liam Polworth who is second on the list.
They define a 'smart pass' as "something more than a simple pass, not so easy to be done. There has to be some idea in the pass, something creative, when the player is cutting the lines and winning some advantage for his teammates with this pass, leading them in good position to attack. The pass should be between 2-3 opposite players."
It was most evident in the assist which set up Daryl Horgan to score against Rangers earlier in the campaign.
This term there has been much more to his game than simply passing. He has added goals.
In his first two spells at Hibs he scored a total of six goals. It's not even December and he has netted seven in all competitions - he could easily hit double figures by the winter break.
His most recent strike against St Johnstone was emblematic of the improvement in front of goal and his evolution. Intercepting a pass in the middle of the pitch, he had only one idea as he drove forward with pace before a fine across-the-goalkeeper finish.
Three of his four league strikes have seen him drive into the box with one purpose when, in the past, he may have looked for a reverse pass.
Goals against Ross County and the opening-day strike versus St Mirren are similar with Allan hitting back across the goalkeeper into the corner. His composure is such that he should be hitting the net more often but he seems to have developed a ruthlessness when in the final third and that narrow vision some of the best strikers possess.
Stats from PA show Allan's efficiency in front of goal in the Premiership. He has averaged just 3.5 shots per goal scored, putting him in the top ten in the league, ahead of the likes of Ryan Christie, Alfredo Morelos, Ryan Christie and Odsonne Edouard.
It is something which should excite the Hibs support.
This midfield maestro, capable of creating chaos with penetrative passes, has augmented his game with goals. An attacking tour de force.