Sami Hyypia has tackled the near-impossible task of deciding on the most special memory he has of his time playing with Steven Gerrard at Liverpool.
The former Reds centre-back didn’t opt for a spectacular goal or historic win with the legendary No.8, but instead a momentous exchange between the pair.
“There are so many memories. He scored very important goals for us, but for me the most special memory was when the captaincy went to Stevie,” Hyypia told Liverpoolfc.com.
“I will remember that morning for the rest of my life, the way it went. I think when he got that armband, mentally he stepped onto another stage and made a huge leap forward. That made him who he is today.”
“I think I said to him he deserves it. I didn’t have any bad feelings about passing the armband on. It happens sometimes and it’s not too bad to give it to a player like Gerrard.”
The respect Hyypia paid Gerrard, who was only 23-years-old when his first become captain, summed up the former Finland international’s career.
His natural leadership qualities in addition to the way he commanded things from the back forces fans wonder just how much he’d be worth in the modern transfer market.
Only one may have worn the armband, but Liverpool had two role models on the pitch, if not more.
Hyypia shared six major trophy triumphs with Gerrard, including the famous 2005 Champions League final win over AC Milan.
The remarkable standards he set explain why Reds supporters continue to have such high expectations of the way their team defends.