Wojciech Szczesny's improved decision-making has made him one of the Premier League's best goalkeepers, according to Arsène Wenger.
The Arsenal manager gave Szczesny his top-flight debut at Manchester United in December 2010 and has championed him ever since, despite taking him out of the side at the back end of last season.
Szczesny has cemented his No 1 spot this term and made his 100th Premier League appearance against Fulham on Saturday, marking the milestone with his 10th clean sheet of the campaign.
He was always a very talented boy but because he's intelligent he learns quickly from experience
"Certainly a part of his improvement is mental because he's more mature," Wenger told Arsenal Player.
"His decision-making is cleaner, sharper, quicker. He was always a very talented boy but because he's intelligent he learns quickly from experience.
"I'm happy that I always gave him the confidence because he's developing very well into a very strong goalkeeper and today certainly nobody would question that he's one of the top five goalkeepers in the Premier League."
Szczesny is a key member of a defensive unit that has shipped 19 goals in 22 Premier League matches - and just 13 in 21 games if you overlook last month's aberration at Manchester City. It's a record that Wenger believes helps Arsenal at the other end of the pitch.
"That defensive solidity of course is the basic work you have to do to be efficient at home," he said.
"Maybe what is even more important is to have that solidarity at home because it gives you time to fatigue your opponent, time to stretch them, time to dominate them and get the game completely in their own half. The longer that lasts the more you have chances to score."Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source