Rangers starlet Danny Wilson insists he expected to be dropped once Madjid Bougherra was available again.
The 18-year-old defender was drafted into the first-team fold at Ibrox when a combination of late returns from international duty and niggling injuries left Bougherra on the sidelines.
He performed admirably in the senior outings he was awarded, turning in eye-catching displays in both the SPL and UEFA Champions League.
Walter Smith is known to be an admirer of the youngster's talents, but opted to drop him back down to the bench once Bougherra was brought back into contention.
Wilson claims he had no problem with taking a step back, but hopes he will be given another chance to prove his worth over the coming weeks while Bougherra is away on African Cup of Nations duty with Algeria.
"I expected to drop out of the team for a bit and I understand the reasons for it so I wasn't too disappointed with that," he said.
"Obviously I wanted to play but I knew the reasons for not playing so I wasn't too upset.
"I'm still young and there is plenty of time to learn and I just need to do that in the games that I do play in.
"The manager took me aside and spoke to me and I was happy with him doing that. I understood his reasons fully."
He added: "There is more of an opportunity for me to play now that Madjid is away but it's up to the gaffer whether I play or not.
"Hopefully I will be given the nod and hopefully I can show what I can do."
Wilson was promoted back into the starting XI for last weekend's Old Firm derby against Celtic and hopes he did enough against the Hoops to hold onto his starting berth.
"I wasn't so nervous about the game but I hadn't played for a while and I was a bit worried about being rusty going into the game," he said.
"The Old Firm game was a boost for my confidence because the manager could have done numerous things at the back but he picked me to play and that was great for me."