Ross County defender Harry Clarke is keen to embrace the freedom that comes with playing at right-back.
On-loan Arsenal player Clarke has played at full-back in the Staggies’ last two matches, since coming on as a substitute for the injured Keith Watson during the 2-1 loss to Motherwell on September 25.
Clarke once again impressed in the position during Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Dundee United at Tannadice.
Although he predominantly plays as a centre-half, Clarke offers no shortage of versatility, having started his career with Arsenal as a midfielder, while also featuring at full-back within the Gunners’ youth setup.
With County’s regular right-back, Connor Randall, sidelined with an ankle injury, Clarke is enjoying the opportunity to use his pace in a more advanced part of the park.
Clarke said: “The boys did really well in the first half against Motherwell, but then Keith got a knock and the manager put me on there.
“I’ve played right-back before so I didn’t feel out of place – I felt quite comfortable.
“I think I have done OK.
“It’s nice playing there. I get to go forward, into the other half, which doesn’t happen often.
“I’m quite quick, but I don’t get to use that so much at centre-half a lot, so to do that at right-back is good.”
Loan signing Clarke already feels at home with Ross County
Although Clarke’s stint in Dingwall is only a temporary one, the 20-year-old already feels a strong connection with the Staggies.
Clarke, who spent last season on loan with Oldham Athletic, added: “As a loan player, it can be quite challenging at the start because I’m coming from a Premier League club and I already come with that Premier League mentality that I think we should be winning every game.
“But the boys here have that, no matter where they come from.
“As loan players, you have to get involved, get in the team.
“I’m here for a year, not a few games. I care if we win or lose just as much as these boys who have signed permanent contracts. It is important.”
County are still searching for their first league win after eight matches, with only goal difference keeping them above bottom-placed Dundee.
Clarke insists there is no panic among Malky Mackay’s squad, however, adding: “Not getting wins is going to play on your mind, obviously.
“I’m not going to say it doesn’t affect me personally and other boys, but team morale is good.
“Boys are not coming in with their heads down and feeling sorry for ourselves.
“The manager emphasises that we can do that. We have to refocus on the next game.
“After the Hearts game, the boys are down after conceding the free-kick and not getting the win. A similar kind of thing happened at Motherwell.
“But you can’t just sit and dwell on it.
“It’s disappointing, we should be higher up the table on performances, but you’ve got to get on with it.”