Harry Redknapp believes Wilson Palacios has developed into a "vital player" for Tottenham.
The powerful Honduran midfielder has been a key figure in Spurs' revival under Redknapp following his £12million move from Wigan in January.
Spurs were languishing in 15th when Palacios arrived at White Hart Lane - but they went on to finish eighth and started this campaign with four straight victories.
Redknapp said: "He's a vital player for us. He gets after the ball, he works, he's strong. His attitude as well, the way he trains ever day.
"He might give the ball away occasionally but he works hard to get it back and he's a big factor in our improvement. He puts a shift in when he doesn't have the ball.
"That attitude has rubbed off on everyone."
Redknapp is full of admiration for Palacios' strength of character after the tragedy of his brother's murder back in Honduras at the end of last season.
"What he's been through with his family, you want him to succeed," said Redknapp.
"He's an easy going, lovely lad who just wants to play football.
"He's pleased and honoured to be here and play for Spurs. That's why the fans love him and you want him to do well."
Tottenham's unbeaten start was ended by Manchester United last weekend and this Sunday they face league leaders Chelsea.
"I thought we played well, got the early goal, but like all champions they came back strongly," said Redknapp.
"It's not a case of sharpening up. I changed a couple of things around. For an hour we played as well as we have all season."Reuse content