Ron Vlaar admits the words of praise from legendary centre-half Paul McGrath gave him a big boost of confidence ahead of the Hull win.
McGrath tweeted: "Vlaar leads by example and he isn't afraid of a tackle. I think he could go on to be one of the best players Villa have had at the back for a long time."
Vlaar heard of the heartfelt commendation from the man they call God on the eve of the Tigers clash.
And it made the skipper feel 10 feet tall as he looked for a colossal performance in the safety match with Steve Bruce's men.
He said: "If a legend like Paul McGrath has said something like that about me, it's really, really positive.
"It gives me a lot of energy because he was such a big player for this football club.
"I've actually read his autobiography and I was really impressed. What he did was exceptional.
"He didn't train a lot but he was there performing every Saturday - doing his job.
"What matters is how you perform in a game and he never let anyone down.
"I'm not thinking about trying to be like him, though. I just want to play as well as I can in every match. I just try to do my best.
"When I stop playing, I want people to say 'he was a good player and did a lot for the club.
"It's an honour to be captain here. But even without the armband, I would do things the same. That's my character."
Vlaar will now lead the team into the final two games of the season - tough away matches at Man City and Tottenham.
The captain believes the opening two encounters of the term - against Arsenal and Chelsea - should act as an inspiration as they aim to finish the season in style.
He added: "We finish the season pretty much as we started it - with two difficult away games, one of which has been rearranged.
"We can take encouragement from those matches in August. We won at Arsenal on the opening day and then were desperately unlucky to lose to Chelsea a few days later."
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