Harry Redknapp described Ledley King as a player who has ‘everything' after another imperious display against Villa.
Ledley and central defensive partner Michael Dawson barely put a foot wrong up against the pace of Gabriel Agbonlahor and power of first Emile Heskey, then John Carew, as it ended goalless at the Lane.
Heurelho Gomes was only forced into one double-save against a side with so much attacking potential and Ledley's afternoon was summed up by a textbook sliding tackle as Agbonlahor made a typical burst into the box in the first half.
"Ledley's a fantastic player," explained boss Harry. "It's hard because Sebastien Bassong played so well at Leeds, but Ledley's a special player and that's why when he's fit, I play him.
"He's quick, he's powerful, he's got everything. He played against two fantastic strikers and did a great job."
Harry was delighted with the performance even though we were left frustrated in front of goal thanks in main to a gritty defensive display from a Villa team who have conceded fewest goals in the Barclays Premier League.
"I thought we were terrific, we played some great stuff," he added. "We've been in good form, one defeat in 12 and I felt we were a credit, the way we played.
"It was a good performance, everything was right but we didn't get the breaks in front of goal.
"Things are going well though. We're pushing for fourth, still in the FA Cup and we're about 18 points better off than we were at this stage last season, so that's good."