Arsene Wenger maintains Andrey Arshavin is the most creative force in the Barclays Premier League - and is set to unleash the Russian against title rivals Manchester City on Sunday.
The 29-year-old admits he has had "some good games and some bad, nothing unusual" this season.
While it has certainly not been the same impact which followed his arrival from Zenit St Petersburg in a £15 million deal during January 2009, Wenger feels the diminutive attacker has contributed plenty to the team, with five goals so far.
"If you look at the stats, he is the player who has created more chances than everybody else in the Premier League this season, so his numbers are quite surprising to people who think he has not done so well," Wenger said.
"I believe that since the start of the season in the Premier League, he has been better at creating chances than anyone else."
Meanwhile, Arsenal look set to come up against their former striker Emmanuel Adebayor on Sunday, the Togolese having netted a hat-trick in City's Europa League win over Polish outfit Lech Poznan.
Adebayor made the headlines for the wrong reasons last season, both for his over-the-top goal celebration in the 4-2 victory and then stamping on Robin van Persie's face, which earned him a three-match ban.
Wenger, however, insists there is no sense of ill-feeling toward the former Arsenal favourite, sold for £25 million during the summer of 2009.
"When you accept to sell a player you cannot accuse him of not being loyal," said the Arsenal boss, who signed Adebayor from Monaco in January 2006.
"A manager tries to influence the club's life, but as well the life of the player.
"When you can help a player to have a successful career and a happy life, you think you do your job."
Wenger insists Arsenal will not let themselves get concerned over just which starting XI big-spending City boss Roberto Mancini will select.
"What I can master is the team that I will play and the way we focus and the way we play," Wenger said.
"We feel we have of course won again and we are very close to doing something special.
"There is a good spirit in the side, we have seen already at Chelsea that we are close to winning these big games and that is what we want to do."