Roberto Martinez praised John Stones after Everton's penalties win over Juventus.
The young Blues defender turned in a composed performance to help nullify the threat of the likes of Carlos Tevez and Fernando Llorente - before emerging as a penalty shootout hero.
He produced an impudent dinked chip to score in sudden death to ratchet up the pressure on the Italians, seconds after Andrea Pirlo has missed a crucial spot kick.
Martinez told evertontv: "I knew he was going to do it because the last three he has taken in training he has done that. The question was could he do it after Andrea Pirlo and at his age.
"It was incredible and I thought it was an example of his performance. He was composed throughout and it was a very useful game for himself and (he could be) a very important 'new' player for us going forward."
The Blues boss declared himself thoroughly satisfied with the evening's work as his side looked every part the equal of the Italian champions.
"It was really really useful," he beamed. "The effort form the players and the understanding to go toe-to-toe with such a good side was a really good exercise.
"The game had everything, both teams had chances, probably we should have won it in 90 minutes, but then we kept our compose after they scored and in the penalties you saw young players expressing themselves and we got a well deserved reward."