Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers believes the club have managed to fill the void left by the retired Jamie Carragher through Kolo Toure.
The Ivory Coast international opted to leave Manchester City at the end of last season, eager for a fresh challenge after four years at the Etihad Stadium having also racked up a seven year spell at Arsenal.
The centre half decided to remain in the Premier League with Liverpool and has revelled in his commanding position in the Reds' back-line, making 11 appearances for the club so far this season.
In a busy summer at Anfield, Rodgers also added France international Mamadou Sakho and Portuguese starlet Tiago Ilori to his central defensive options, with the resurgent Martin Skrtel and Daniel Agger also vying for starting berths.
But Rodgers believes Toure's leadership qualities and timeless ability to read the game similarly as the club's former vice captain did remains an invaluable asset in a pivotal season on Merseyside.
"(Toure) came in and showed us he's a model professional," Rodgers told a press conference, Liverpool's official website reports.
"His fitness level is still really good. He's quick, strong and a great reader of the game. He manages the game in a very similar way to what Jamie Carragher did.
"So he's come in and been outstanding. He can play in a couple of positions and he's made a great contribution.
"When we assessed the squad at the end of last season, we felt that we needed to bring in proven winners with experience, but who still had the hunger to succeed.
"So to be able to get him on a free transfer, at 32 years of age, was great business for the club."
Toure has started in eight of Liverpool's Premier League games so far this season in what has been a terrific start for the Reds who sit third, five points adrift of leaders Arsenal.