One specific moment at training was enough to convince Mick McCarthy that Troy Parrott possesses "something special", as the Ireland manager prepares the teenager striker for his international debut on Thursday night.
McCarthy has confirmed that the Spurs striker will start the international friendly as Ireland take on New Zealand at the Aviva.
The Tottenham teenager will lead the line, while the Ireland manager also confirmed that Shamrock Rovers midfielder Jack Byrne and Celtic defender Lee O'Connor will also start against the Kiwis.
McCarthy said that he has no injury concerns ahead of the game, and more importantly, in the build-up to Monday’s all-or-nothing clash with Denmark.
The manager added that he is unlikely to start, or even call off the bench, anyone that he has slated for a start on Monday in the New Zealand clash, which leaves the door open for the younger and peripheral players to make their mark in the friendly encounter.
"He's a bright, very intelligent footballer that's very good with the ball at his feet," said McCarthy, speaking about Spurs youngster Parrott.
"He did some really good things yesterday. I think he found it tough enough, it was a pretty hard session, but he enjoyed it. He is very capable, there’s no doubt about that."
Parrott has not played a competitive match at club level since scoring four goals in a UEFA Youth League game against Red Star Belgrade on 22 October, as he has been travelling with the first team without getting any game time.
"They get caught between being involved in the first team, travelling with the first team, and it's something that happens at all clubs," explained McCarthy.
"The ones that are nearly there travel with the first team, don’t play with the first team, don’t play with the U23s. I think his last game was when he got four goals against Red Star Belgrade.
"Understandable, then, that he was breathing a bit hard when he was training with us."
But McCarthy admitted that he has already seen glimpses of the young prospect over the course of two days’ training, which makes him believe that he is a special talent.
"I don’t think I have seen his full potential in the couple of training sessions that we have had.
"But he did something yesterday when the ball came into him, and he turned and he got his shot off, which was terrific.
"And you could see from that one little cameo, that he has got something special."
"It doesn’t take a special kid to be pitched in, it takes a special kid when they are pitched in to thrive and make a good impression," said McCarthy when asked about comparisons of throwing Robbie Keane into the international scene at a similar age.
"I hope that’s the case with Troy. Robbie did it instantly, and continued to do it for how many years, caps and goals."
And the manager believes that having Keane around the training ground can only help Parrott and the other young players heading into Thursday night’s game.
"Robbie is a help to all the strikers, and he was working with some of them yesterday.
"He was working with Troy yesterday. Any information he can give in terms of movement: he was one of the best, Robbie. His movement to get himself chances, you can help him in terms of finishing, you can give them tips.
"TC [Terry Connor] is fantastic for that. But in terms of an all-round striker Robbie has been one of the best.
"If you can’t learn from him you can’t learn from anyone."
Follow Republic of Ireland v New Zealand on Thursday 14 November via our live blog on RTÉ.ie/sport and the News Now app, watch on RTÉ2 or listen to live radio commentary on RTÉ Radio 1 Extra