The Port Glasgow-born 36-year-old joined from league rivals Hamilton Accies this summer as Moore added experience to his squad.
But the Ton boss has also endorsed McLaughlin's ability to rouse his team-mates and has been left in no doubt that it was the right decision to hand him the armband.
The manager said: "Big Mark is our captain, he is a leader on the pitch and gives us our drive and determination.
"He has shown that in pre-season. Some people talked about his age but I'm looking at what he brings to the team. We have a strong spine and Mark is part of that."