U.S. national team prospect Emerson Hyndman has hailed Cesc Fabregas as a key influence, saying the Chelsea star "was one player I sought to be."
A regular of the U.S. youth setup, the 21-year-old Bournemouth midfielder has already earned two senior national team caps.
Discussing the players who inspired him as an up-and-coming central midfielder, Hyndman pointed to Fabregas, as well as Croatian maestro Luka Modric.
"Cesc Fabregas was one," Hyndman told the Daily Echo. "He wasn't the biggest guy, and at the time I really related to that. I was quite small for my age and he had the captain's armband at Arsenal when he was young, so he was one player I sought to be. He was the difference-maker in that team.
"Later on, Luka Modric and the way he impacted Tottenham. There have been quite a few, but I think Fabregas is probably the one."
Hyndman left Fulham to sign with Bournemouth in the summer of 2016. Although Hyndman is yet to make his Premier League debut, having spent this past spring on loan to Rangers, the Texas native has appeared in three Carabao Cup matches for Bournemouth this season.
"I'm used to it now, but at the beginning it was a bit tough," he said. "I was scrapping for myself, cleaning my clothes and feeding myself, but you get used to it quickly.
"England almost feels more like home sometimes, just because I've lived here so long and I don't really get back often. I get a six-week break in the U.S., so I live here for most of the year and I've been doing that for six years now.
"It was a hard transition at the age of 15, but I've really grown to enjoy playing in England. I enjoy the way the game is played — at a fast pace — and I think I have adapted quite well."