Fleetwood Town manager Micky Mellon thinks Joey Barton's spell with the club provided his squad with the perfect preparation for the current season.
The newly-promoted side have made a promising start to life in League Two, currently sitting in fourth position after three wins from their first five games.
The Cod Army hit the headlines in the summer when Barton spent a period training with them, although a mooted loan move did not materialise.
But Mellon believes the controversial midfielder left a lasting effect on his side after showing them the effort that is required to play in the top flight.
"He just showed the standards and commitment you need to have in order to play at that level and stay at that level," Mellon told Sky Sports News.
"The training intensity went through the roof and has stayed that way since he's gone because now we expect that every day. So it's had a positive impact."
Mellon also believes the experience of working with a star player has improved him as a manager.
He added: "Because you're working with a top player the standards have got to be bang on because that's what they're used to and that's what they expect.
"Every day I try and learn something and try and move forward."