Tony Mowbray reveals what he has told Sunderland defender Bailey Wright
Sunderland boss Tony Mowbray has hailed Bailey Wright's professionalism as he waits for a chance to impress in the first team, and urged him to take his chance when it comes around.
Wright has found his opportunities limited in the Championship this season, with Danny Batth yet to miss a game and Luke O'Nien stepping into Dan Ballard's role in the right of central defence after his foot injury.
The recent injury to Aji Alese, alongside that of Ross Stewart and Ellis Simms, has made Sunderland vulnerable to opposition set pieces. That has led some to wonder whether Mowbray could turn to Wright as a result.
"It goes through your mind at half time, of course, to put Bailey Wright on and try to shore it up," Mowbray said.
"But if you lose 4-2 and you've changed shape, put more defenders on, then people wonder why you did it - that's football management and you just accept that, you make your decisions and you live and die by them.
"Bailey is an amazing human being, a fantastic guy. He's the most vocal, supportive member of the dressing room before and after the game regardless of whether he's actually played or not.
"He's a diamond of a lad. The decisions around who plays are based on logic on my mind, and of course everyone can have their own opinion.
"He's a model pro and when his opportunity comes, he has to try and grab it. I don't have agendas and Bailey will know that he's got some competition, when Aji and Ballard are fit... Danny Batth has done well, Luke O'Nien and Dennis Cirkin too.
"It's a challenge to get into the team and he knows that. He also knows that if he gets in the team and we win games and we're keeping clean sheets, it will be someone else who ends up in his position. That's football."
Mowbray is likely to continue with Trai Hume at right back after Lynden Gooch was ruled out until after the World Cup, but Wright does give him the option to move O'Nien across or shift to a back three at some stage.