"He played extremely well, a truly outstanding performance. You would not have known he had been away from the action for so long.
"Nicky is now a very important player for us."
Captain Beckham, a long-time friend and team-mate of Butt at Manchester United, has never doubted his quality.
He said: "To come in like Nicky has done, especially against Argentina, after so long out was fantastic.
We have all known for years how good Nicky is, he just needed the chance.
"He has got his chance now and everyone can see how good he is. Everyone who has played with him will tell you that.
"Nicky keeps things ticking over in midfield, and he was unbelievable against Argentina. He won tackles and some of the passes he played through were very important."
Scholes, who rivals Butt for the title of the quietest member of England's squad, is surprised that he has had his doubters.
He said: "Nicky Butt has been brilliant, but he has been like that for years and he is only starting to get the recognition he deserves now.
"For some reason a lot of people are surprised at the way he's playing, but anyone who knows him or has played with him knows what a great player he is."
Butt may not have the profile of Rivaldo or Ronaldo for Brazil, or Beckham and Michael Owen for England - but you will never hear Eriksson under-estimating his importance.