Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish believes Jamie Carragher's influence is still being felt on the pitch for the side.
Carragher has found himself relegated to the bench for the last seven games despite returning to fitness after a short spell on the sidelines at the end of October.
The form of Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel has meant Carragher has been forced to content himself with a place on the bench with Liverpool keeping four clean sheets in his absence.
Dalglish believes the new centre-back pairing of Agger and Skrtel have both benefited from playing alongside Carragher during their time at Anfield.
"I don't think they have ever looked a bad pair but the both of them are playing very well," said Dalglish.
"They know how to play. Jamie being beside them when they came in at first has been a fantastic help to them, as he has been for a lot of people here.
"You can't under-play what Jamie has done for the two of them but they are more than capable of standing on their own two feet.
"Competition is always helpful but it is not as though the two boys are novices, they are seasoned international players and Daniel is going to Euro 2012 (with Denmark)."
On their recent good defensive run Dalglish added: "It is not just about centre-backs and full-backs defending, it is about everyone.
"As soon as we lose the ball we start defending together and when we have it everyone can go forward if they want.
"Daniel Agger got forward a couple of times on Sunday (in the 2-0 win at Aston Villa) and Martin scored a goal.
"They have been good defensively but they have been good in attack as well."