Nottingham Forest manager Steve Cotterill wants to see more consistency from talented midfielder Lewis McGugan.
McGugan cut a forlorn figure as he was left on the bench during Forest's 1-0 defeat at Championship rivals Brighton on Saturday.
Cotterill decided to take the 23-year-old out the firing line following a recent spell where he has failed to hit top form.
But the Forest boss has backed his star man to bounce back as he warned all his players there is no substitute for hard work.
"Lewis is one of our most creative, gifted players. But the fact is that creative players cannot be creative every five minutes," Cotterill told the Nottingham Post.
"Everyone is allowed an off day and I have great faith in the young man. Lewis is that creative player for us, that's why I pick him.
"What we must not be is blinded by things. If one of our most creative, gifted players is not having a good game one day, I can take him off and pat him on the back and keep encouraging him.
"What you have to be mindful of is the word creative does not come at the expense of hard work.
"And this is not specifically about Lewis - it applies to anyone."