Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson is sure that in Raul Meireles and Steven Gerrard he has the partnership to lead the club back to the Champions League.
Hodgson, 63, brought in Meireles this summer to bolster the midfield in the absence of Javier Mascherano and Alberto Aquilani. The £11.5 million signing played behind Fernando Torres in Sunday's 3-2 defeat to Manchester United in a role usually occupied by skipper Gerrard.
Speaking in his post-match press conference, Hodgson earmarked the players as the double act to play the Anfield outfit back to the top four spots in the Premier League table.
"They [Meireles and Gerrard] are certainly interchangeable," the ex-Fulham boss was quoted as saying by skysports.com.
"We signed Meireles and the day after he went for 10 days away with Portugal and then came back for two days and made a substitute appearance against Birmingham.
"He had two training sessions and played on Thursday night and he played again on Sunday so it is very early for me to make very strong judgements about where his best position is.
"The work we do on the training field will show me how best to use him.
"He actually went out wide right late in the United game and did okay there also.
"All I can say is he has a lot of qualities and I'm sure we'll get a lot of use out of him.
"Most importantly he is a good and talented footballer and he is capable of playing anywhere across the midfield so we will see how we box it up together."