Harry Redknapp was impressed with Younes Kaboul's display in central midfield in Saturday's win at Stoke.
The versatile defender - who made his first start for us at right-back at Wolves after returning from Portsmouth in January - came in for Wilson Palacios and partnered Luka Modric in the heart of the battle zone at the Britannia Stadium.
Strong defensively, not least with long throws and set-pieces regularly coming into the box, Younes rarely lost possession and got involved in the attacking third as well, smashing in a couple of shots from distance.
"I left Wilson Palacios out because he's on nine bookings and took a gamble," explained Harry after the 2-1 victory. "I couldn't risk Wilson. If he got booked again he would miss the FA Cup replay against Fulham and Younes is cup-tied on Wednesday.
"It meant I was one senior player short at Stoke with Wilson on the bench.
"I thought Younes did a terrific job for us in there especially for a lad who hasn't played in midfield very often.
"I was really pleased with him. His heading was fantastic and he kept his passing simple. I was delighted with his performance."