BBC Sport pundit Garth Crooks has hailed James Milner's start to the Premier League season, naming the Liverpool veteran his player of the season up to this point.
The Reds midfielder continued his fine start to the campaign by giving his side the lead in their clash against Arsenal on Saturday evening, and Crooks claimed the performance epitomised why the Englishman is his early front runner for the prize.
Writing in his weekly team of the week column for BBC Sport, the former Tottenham striker said: "Milner has taken the early lead for my Footballer of the Year. I must say that Eden Hazard is a close second but the way Milner is leading Liverpool through some very tricky games is very impressive.
"Against Arsenal the ball couldn't have dropped in front of a more cool-headed but utterly ruthless professional."
He added: "Whatever happens between now and the end of the season I guarantee you Milner, 32, will be featuring in my TOTW on a few more occasions."
In a close but enthralling encounter, Liverpool and Arsenal shared the spoils at the Emirates Stadium, with Milner's strike cancelled out by a late equaliser from French striker Alexandre Lacazette.
The former England international voiced his frustrations at his side's inability to hold on to their lead, which sees the Anfield side now drop to third and two points off leaders Manchester City.
The Reds are next in action away against Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League and look to consolidate their position at the top of their group with victory.