Steve Bruce believes Kieran Richardson's versatility could be working against him at Sunderland.
The 25-year-old has played in numerous positions due to the injury problems that have hit the Black Cats for six this term.
Nursing a calf strain himself, Richardson is expected to figure against Arsenal on Saturday where he may, once again, be played out of position.
Bruce believes the talented midfielder is strongest at left-back while the player, himself, appears to enjoy a more central role.
"Kieran is a very talented footballer and it is to his detriment that I have used him in four or five positions because of the problems we've had," Bruce told The Sun.
"I think he prefers the centre of midfield but he played very well at left-back.
"For me that's his best position but he would never say that."