By FOX SPORTS staff
Signed in May 2011 from Nuremberg, Gundogan took a while to settle into the Borussia Dortmund first team. However, the 22-year old has since established himself as a regular fixture in Klopp's line-up, securing a starting 11 slot in 20 out of 26 Bundesliga games this season.
The Dortmund manager told Bild that he was amazed by Gundogan's improvement over the last two years.
"Back then, Ilkay was virtually still an advanced youth player. He had only just finished his school exams. We recognised his abilities early on," Klopp explained.
"But the fact he is so good has surprised us. In a very good team, Ilkay has come on leaps and bounds."
Klopp praised the German international for developing all the right skills required to become a key central midfielder for the team.
"He has the necessary calm, the eye [for a pass] and the vision. Ilkay now sees bigger spaces, and can also find them with long balls," he pointed out.
"Furthermore, he is strong on the ball while knowing when to make a tackle."