Arsenal legend Patrick Vieira believes that Aaron Ramsey is the best player in the Premier League and the reason behind Arsenal's current position in the league table.
The Frenchman, who won three league titles with the Gunners, is currently head of the academy at rivals Manchester City who are currently second in the league, one point behind the Gunners.
Ramsey has been a revelation this season for the north London club but has missed a chunk of games from December since being substituted against West Ham on 26 December.
The Welshman has scored eight and assisted six in the league this season and is the prime reason behind Arsenal's success, more than the record signing of Mesut Ozil in the summer.
His return against Southampton will be a major boost for Wenger who faces a tough run of fixtures in the next two months, with games against Liverpool, Manchester United and Bayern Munich all within a week of each other.
Vieira believes that his performance has been the standout one this season in the league, better than Luis Suarez, who has scored 22 goals thus far, more than any other player.
"If Arsenal are top, it's because [Ramsey] has been the best player at the start of the season. He has been terrific...the most consistent player in the Premier League," Vieira said.
"At the start of the season he was fantastic because of the number of goals he scored from midfield, but also the number of goals he created. Arsene is really good at developing and trusting young players.What stopped Ramsey's progress was injuries in the last few years, but now he has sorted that out. Credit to Arsenal and Arsene who believed in him," he added.
Ramsey's resurgance is all the more remarkable given that he was out for more than a year with a broken leg after being rattled by Stoke City defender Ryan Shawcross and has come back strongly to realise his potential.
"Even with all the injuries, Aaron's kept working hard, believing in himself and that he could make it. The ability has always been there and I'm pleased he is now showing what he is capable of," Vieira concluded.