Sean O'Driscoll hailed the qualities of midfielder Simon Gillett as Nottingham Forest continued their unbeaten run with a victory over Charlton that should have been more emphatic than the 2-1 score suggests.
Goals by Lewis McGugan and Sam Hutchinson, on his full debut, put the Reds on course for all three points before Charlton pulled one back through Ricardo Fuller on his first appearance.
But O'Driscoll had no doubts about the outstanding contribution of Gillett, who he has twice signed for Doncaster and now Forest following his release by the south Yorkshire club.
The Forest boss said: "He was our best player. He's the type who goes under the radar but provides so much.
"The attention might be on the big signings we have made but he provides that bit of glue that is essential. Every side needs a player like him because he allows other things to happen.
"To be honest I thought we played well as a team. I was pleased with the organisation and what we did off the ball as much as on it."
Charlton manager Chris Powell praised Forest after his side's defeat, their first of the Championship campaign.
He said: "It's our first defeat but we have to accept that Forest are a very good side. They have players of Premier League quality in their side never mind the Championship.
"They moved the ball well at times but we came to terms with it in the second half even though we only played ourselves in fits and starts.
"But we will dust ourselves down, make use of the international break and we have a terrific game to look forward to in 13 days time when we have a south London derby against Crystal Palace."