Hyypia heaps praise on Henchoz

LIVERPOOL captain Sami Hyypia believes he has a telepathic understanding with defensive partner Stephane Henchoz.

The domineering duo have formed a rock solid pairing at the heart of the Reds rearguard during the past three years.

Their resolute qualities at the back have provided the platform for Liverpool's success in recent seasons.

But Swiss centre half Henchoz has missed the odd game of late through injury, and Hyypia has been forced to cope without his defensive cohort.

The Reds skipper admits it is more difficult commanding the back line without Henchoz alongside, due to the understanding between the pair.

"I must admit I feel more comfortable about my own role in the side when Stephane is alongside me," said Hyypia.

"When he is out, it takes more communication with whoever is beside me to make sure everything goes smoothly.

"With Stephane, I don't need to say a word to make it work. Neither does he.

"In fact, we don't even have to think about it now. It is just automatic that each of us knows exactly and instinctively where the other is going to be and who is going to do what.

"As a team, we definitely feel more secure with him around."

Hyypia lavished further praise on his team-mate by labelling Henchoz as one of the game's most prominent defenders.

He added: "He is a brilliant defender, one of those who would do anything to keep his goal intact.

"He launches himself into some spectacular tackles, and I would say the defensive aspect of his game is almost perfect.

"That alone makes him one of the best central defenders anywhere in the game, certainly in Europe."

Around Sky