It would have been hard to predict the career path of Lucas Höler a few years ago.

Freiburg’s winter signing did not come through a club’s youth academy and never represented Germany at youth level. His journey to the top has been exponential.

After making his professional debut for Blumenthaler SV in the fifth-tier Bremenliga, Höler has moved up a division almost every season. Two years ago he was featuring in the Mainz reserves in the third tier with current Bundesliga coaches Martin Schmidt and Sandro Schwarz known fans. After an impressive 18 months at SV Sandhausen, where he scored 13 Bundesliga 2 goals, Höler had finally played his way into the focus of Bundesliga teams and in January made the move to Freiburg.

Höler immediately made it into the starting XI and in fact started all three games in January. The Breisgau club remained unbeaten against the likes of Eintracht Frankfurt, Leipzig and Dortmund, with Höler playing his part.

The 23-year-old impressed coach Christian Streich with his tireless performances, playing with high physical intensity. He averages 31 sprints per game, 12.5 kilometres and attempts 27 challenges, winning an impressive 55 per cent of them for an attacker.

"He’s very focused, calm, listens closely and tries to implement tips he’s given," said Streich in praise of his new man. "I’m really excited to see where he’ll be in a year’s time." If Höler continues as he is, there’ll be endless possibilities for him.