Greg Leigh says he’s relishing the challenge of being pitched into Aberdeen’s midfield.
The 25-year-old, with the Dons on a season-long loan from Dutch side NAC Breda, was signed as a defender.
But with injuries and suspensions affecting manager Derek McInnes’ midfield options, Leigh has found himself on occasion moved further forward from left-back.
The Englishman’s first outing in the middle of the park was in a 3-0 win against Motherwell at Fir Park.
Results since when Leigh has featured in midfield have been mixed.
He has played in a victory over Ross County (3-1), draws with St Johnstone (1-1) and Rangers (2-2) and defeats to Celtic (4-0) and Hibs (3-0), the last of which was last weekend.
While he may not have expected to have been pushed further forward when he arrived at Pittodrie in the summer, Leigh is enjoying the challenge and is trying to improve every time he plays in midfield.
The former Bury and Bradford man said: “It’s something I’m doing this season for the first time and it’s definitely a new challenge for me.
“It’s interesting because as a full-back it’s not often you get the chance to play two positions.
“Maybe you move into centre-back, like Andy Considine has done, or up to winger perhaps.
“So to move in the pitch isn’t really normal, but I’ve enjoyed it a lot.
“It’s a challenge every time I play there but it’s been good.”
When manager McInnes first pitched the idea of playing in midfield to Leigh he was determined to adapt.
He added: “My main thought when it was first mentioned to me was ‘how am I going to play this position?’
“It wasn’t fear because I back myself to have the attributes of a footballer rather than a left-back.
“I think I’m decent at striking the ball even though I’m not a striker.
“You use the different attributes you have to try to play a position as best you can.
“I’ve played centre-back and wing-back before so there’s nothing to say I couldn’t step into midfield.
“I’ve backed myself technically and it gave me a chance to utilise my reading of the game, which I like to think is one of my strengths as well.
“I just thought how am I going to play this position, and it’s gone from there.”
Since the opening of Aberdeen’s training ground at Cormack Park, Leigh may have more time to hone his midfield skills.
The facility to the west of the Granite City was opened by Sir Alex Ferguson on October 31 and the first-team squad used it for the first time the following day.
When Leigh, who could join the Dons permanently as a result of a clause in his loan deal, signed in the summer the new training ground was used as a selling point.
He said: “The training ground was mentioned to me in the summer.
“I’m very used to having a training ground with the previous clubs I’ve been at.
“So when I first came to Aberdeen not having a training ground was something I had to get used to.
“So it’s nice now to be back to what I know with Cormack Park opening.”
Leigh also believes the new training facilities have brought the Aberdeen squad closer together.
He said: “There’s definitely a better feel to the club because of having it.
“It adds to the togetherness because everyone is interacting with each other.
“Having a training pitch just outside the building is a lot better than before, getting on a bus to go to and from.
“It has brought the lads closer together. There’s been more interaction between the first team and the youth team.
“We’ve also got a much better gym here so we spend more time in that and do our prehab before training together.
“It’s a nice feeling when we all walk out to training together.”