Stephan El Shaarawy feels that the departures of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Antonio Cassano in the summer transfer window have helped his development at AC Milan this term.
The 20-year-old forward has been one of the revelations of the 2012-13 campaign so far, and has become one of the undisputed stars of Serie A following his fine performances for the Rossoneri.
"With the departures of Ibrahimovic and Cassano, two great strikers left and I've more space now. I started the season in the best way possible personally; I grew a lot," El Shaarawy told the official UEFA website.
The Italy international then went on to thank Massimiliano Allegri for the faith shown in him since his arrival at the club in the summer of 2011.
"I felt a lot of faith from his side, especially last season when I made 28 appearances," El Shaarawy explained.
"This year I've felt even more faith, because the first two matches in Serie A didn't go well and he still continued to pick me. I have to thank him a lot for that."
El Shaarawy has netted 12 goals in 15 Serie A appearances this season.