Slavisa Jokanovic discusses Rhian Brewster's move to right for Sheffield United
The club-record buy has ensured a tough time since heading to Bramall Lane, but Jokanovic insists that his decision to switch him from his recognised position as a centre forward to the right flank should not be perceived as any sleight on his ability.
It is all to do with the Serb's desire for his attacking players to be interchangeable and more tactically flexible across the forward line and belief that it is something that will serve Brewster particularly well in his long career ahead, while also in the here and now.
Jokanovic, speaking ahead of Saturday's Championship trip to Blackburn Rovers, said: "It depends on the different situations (with Brewster).
"A lot of people say he didn’t play in his natural position in the last game. And? What is the problem? This team needed a player in that position and he covered it acceptably good.
"Forest had a left wing-back (Jack Colback) who offered his service to his team (as a midfielder) and that’s it.
"Rhian’s situation has some similarities with Lys Mousset’s, Billy Sharp’s, (David) McGoldrick, (Oli) Burke’s… Iliman’s (Ndiaye) as well. They must all play in situations that are not natural to them.
"Some of them need to move (positions). To try and explain why Rhian played in a place that wasn’t natural, the team needed him in this game.
"He is working hard with the team without being so successful in the offensive actions. If I need him for the next game, he will be available.
"He didn’t play a brilliant game (at Nottingham Forest) but supported the team and followed the plan for the game. He is one of the most talented English players, but I expect more collaboration from his side, to be more bright in the work and when I choose him to help and support the team."
One player who made a strong impact on his first-team return in the week was Chris Basham, with Jokanovic effusive in his praise of the Geordie, who is likely to again line up in the heart of the defence at Ewood Park on Saturday with Ben Davies still suffering from a virus.
Jokanovic added: "His (Basham's) attitude he shows daily, in training. He never changes his mood about working whether he’s on the pitch or not and he had a good game against Forest.
"He’s always in competition to play, he contributed in a positive mental way and this guy is definitely useful for us.
"He was everything you expect from a professional football player. He kept working and stayed ready for his moment; for his time. "He is a full professional, which I expect. We must all be at a professional level and be a fantastic professional like him."