Manchester United centre-back Chris Smalling has attributed 'communication' as the key ingredient of the successful Nemanja Vidic-Rio Ferdinand centre-back partnership during the latter part of the Sir Alex Ferguson era.
Smalling, when asked about his experiences of playing with Vidic, heaped praise on the Serbian and claimed that his contribution to the club will be remembered for years.
He told manutd.com: "Talking to him, on and off the field, was invaluable. Communication was key to his great partnership with Rio [Ferdinand], it's the key to any defensive partnership, Vida always stressed that to me.
"He and Rio could anticipate trouble before it happened at times because they read the game so well and communicated so well together.
"He wasn't just a big figure in the defence, he had a knack of popping up at the other with some key goals too and he was always a threat from set-plays, which is another thing I'd like to continue to improve in my game.
"His contribution to United will be talked about for years to come and he'll rightly go down as a club legend. Whenever he stepped on the pitch, he led by example and he was a true centre-back that all us defenders should look up to."